Giving Ribs Their Soul Back - NBC Bay Area

Giving Ribs Their Soul Back

Bay Area foodie reviews Baby Blues BBQ



    The Dos and Don'ts of Good Sleep
    God bless soul food.

    Baby Blues BBQ bills itself as a “hybrid” barbecue restaurant: they serve a Memphis-style rib alongside sauce from North Carolina. Not hailing from the south, I probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between Tennessee and Carolina barbecue, but if it’s anything like what Baby Blues BBQ serves, I can tell you that it’s delicious.

    Located right between San Francisco’s Bernal Heights and Mission districts, Baby Blues BBQ has only been around for a couple of years, having first established itself in Venice Beach before moving up north. When I visited, I had already heard rave reviews about its mac n’ cheese (or what was endearingly described as crack n’ cheese).

    The wait was long when I arrived with my group; in fact, we must have waited a good half an hour before we were seated. I didn’t mind; the crowd was fun and the staff was super friendly. We enjoyed a couple of beers and perused the menu until we were seated.

    I chose the Texas-style beef rib, which comes with a choice of three fixings. I went for the cornbread, collard greens and mac n’ cheese.

    The ribs come covered in a dry rub, and there are spicy sauces on the tables to dress things up if you like some heat to your meat. I dug right into my Flintstones-sized rib and the tender beef practically fell off the bone, to my delight.

    I was a little disappointed in the mac n’ cheese – the noodles were a bit mushy and the sauce wasn’t very flavorful. I fully admit that I am in the minority when it comes to my opinion of Baby Blues BBQ’s mac n’ cheese though. The collard greens were good but not excellent, but again, this is a matter of personal taste. I like my collard greens with a hit of vinegar; these were more spicy.

    But let’s talk about the cornbread. Hands down, this was the best cornbread I’ve ever tasted. It was fluffy, moist, sweet, and just about every adjective I can think of to describe perfect cornbread. It was the stuff cornbread fantasies are made of. Seriously, I cannot overemphasize how delicious this cornbread was.

    Baby Blues BBQ is a great spot for a fun, casual and heavy meal. (Did I mention the portions are huge? No? Well, they are.) If you’re looking to get your fill on southern-style barbecue, you’d be hard pressed to find a better option in the neighborhood.

    Mariam Hosseini is a Bay Area native who has been writing about food and travel for six years.  She blogs regularly at