BBQ Review

Porky Pete's BBQ

90 Plains Road

Essex, CT 06426

(860) 767-1021

  category: Connecticut BBQ, Essex BBQ






This counter-service-only establishment (too squeaky clean to be called a joint) is adjacent to an Exxon convenience store in rural eastern Connecticut, about 4 miles off I-95. There are no seats, just a take-out counter and a few refrigerator cases with take-out meats, reheatable  meals and baked goods. There are two picnic tables outside though. From here, you can see the smoker inside a screened-in porch out back.


The menu is pretty simple: pork ribs, pulled pork. No combos. There's a half pound minimum on pork, so I got just ribs, with baked beans and cole slaw. While waiting for my order to be heated, I read a framed clipping on the wall that said the owners were a couple from Nashville, which made me optimistic. I promised myself that if the ribs were any good, I'd try some of the pulled pork.


The ribs were a stiff and meaty half slab, with a thick, sticky glaze and no noticeable rub or spice crust. The bones weren't separated and there was no knife to do so. They were smoky, gamey, and a little tough, probably needing at least another hour in the smoker. Between the taste and the texture, I gave up after two ribs.


Beans were decent, with a fairly thick sauce and not too sweet. Cole slaw was finely chopped, crisp and very tangy. Cornbread was small, very pale and tasted like a baked version of that white paste they gave you in kindergarten. It was probably the worst cornbread I ever had.


I never did try that pulled pork.


The bottom line: I simply can’t recommend this place.


Porky Pete's BBQ on Urbanspoon


Looks like a store, but that's not so bad.


The ribs looked tough. Trust me, they were.


Worst cornbread ever?





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