WV's Best BBQ
From good ol' country cooking to secret sauce, sink your teeth into the finest ribs, pulled pork, and beef brisket from some of the state's best barbecue joints.
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Dee Jay’s, Weirton
Dee Jay’s is located in Weirton, but it’s known throughout the region as one of the best places around to get barbecued ribs. Chances are, you could run into a Steeler, Pirate, or Penguin while you’re there, as the eatery’s reputation even extends into Pittsburgh!
Dee Jay’s famous rib sauce is made with a secret ingredient, identified only as “TLC” and said to be so consistent that if you were there 10 years ago and now, the taste would be exactly as you remembered it. Serving more than 2,500 customers on an average weekend, this restaurant is well-staffed and ready to do “whatever it takes,” which is also their motto, according to manager Pat Kittle. While the fish and steak entrées are popular, the ribs are by far the bestseller. The bright, tropical island décor, accented with two large neon palm trees marking the entrance, gives Dee Jay’s a lively, vacation-feel atmosphere. Owner Dewey Guida recently celebrated his 30th anniversary in this award-winning BBQ rib business.
Dee Jay’s, 380 Three Springs Drive, Weirton, WV 26062; 304.748.1150
The Q Company, Martinsburg
Mitchell and Sara Matzek grabbed the bull by the ribs! After winning Food Network’s “24 Hour Restaurant Battle,” they’ve created a Texas-style barbecue joint in Martinsburg that will knock your socks off. Tucked behind the Dirty Dawg Saloon, this innovative eatery churns out slow-smoked pulled pork, ribs, and beef brisket that will melt in your mouth. Their coleslaw, baked beans, and potato salad are the perfect accompaniments.
The owners aren’t the only ones claiming that Q is the best BBQ in the Eastern Panhandle. Since opening in April, fans have created a stampede. Their outdoor dining area is outfitted with picnic tables and a covered bar. Honky tonk music punctuates the experience. If you’d rather enjoy the flavors of a Texas Roadhouse in the privacy of your own home, the Matzeks have a robust catering menu.
Barbeque Sundae, a creative concoction of pulled pork topped with baked beans and a layer of coleslaw.
The Q Company is open 3 to 10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, with extended hours to come.
The Q Company, Dirty Dawg Saloon, 1017 South Queen Street, Martinsburg, WV 25401; 304.616.6604
Buddy’s All-American BBQ, Huntington
One part relaxing, one part just plain fun, Buddy’s Bar-B-Que in Huntington is repeatedly voted best eatery in the Huntington Tri-State area for its barbecue and wings. Customers love to find a spot on the screened-in porch and order up the pulled pork sandwich or jumbo wings with ice-cold ales on a warm day. Barbecue sandwiches come on toasted buns, and entrées come with a choice of sides such as crispy steak fries, coleslaw, hush puppies, or garlic toast. Buddy’s is also known for hosting musical acts and bike nights.
—Laura Treacy Bentley
Buddy’s All-American BBQ, 1537 3rd Avenue, Huntington, WV 25701; 304.522.YUMY
Smoke House BBQ, Glenville
Smoke House BBQ owner Michelle Ramsey is a third-generation southern barbecue restaurateur with a winning recipe on her hands. Her southern-style BBQ—using the moist shoulder meat of the hog—is combined with a secret dry rub and slowly smoked for 10 hours in a mixed veil of oak, apple, and hickory, making a trip from most anywhere well worth the drive. The coarse, chopped, classic pulled pork sandwich is the restaurant’s bestseller, accompanied by your choice of homemade sweet or hot sauce, which is also offered by the pint to take home. Satisfying sides include hand-cut fries, homemade coleslaw with a sweet kick to complement the smoky pork, barbecue baked beans, and fried corn on the cob smothered with garlic butter.
If pork’s not your thing, the Smoke House menu runs the gamut with great options like the barbecue chicken or one of many other lunchtime meals. Top it all off with one of the eatery’s scrumptious homemade desserts such as mandarin orange cupcakes or hot fudge cake. Mark your calendars for Friday nights, too, as live bluegrass plays from 6 to 9 p.m. to complete the down-home feel.
What folks are saying:
“This is the best BBQ I've ever had! You have to try it,” says Kim Dulaney.
—Carla Witt Ford
Smoke House BBQ, 10 North Lewis Street, Glenville, WV 26351; 304.462.8989