I'll tell you one place to stay AWAY from. I live in Chicago, but work in Highland Park. I was craving some BBQ today and looked up several places. One isn't open for lunch and another didn't serve pork (kosher). So I was left with Ravinia BBQ. Great reviews on several Chicago websites.
After I picked myself off of the floor after looking at their prices, I called to ask about a few selections. The BBQ pork was not pulled, but instead you got some slices. Now, If I'm going to eat a pork sandwich, it's gonna be pulled with brownies, sauce, and grease.
So I decided on a BBQ chicken sandwich. It wasn't bad
, but I could have saved myself some money and gotten a chicken sandwich at McDonald's for a lot less and the taste would have been comparible. I think that they grilled a plain breast, then put sauce on after it was sitting on the bun. Sitting in my little styrafoam box were some pathetic, limp "fries" straight from the Ore Ida bag. If I'm paying $10 for a sandwich, they could at least have some homemade fries or pair their dishes with a real baked potato.
Plus, I could tell that this was going to be phoney-baloney BBQ the second I walked in the door. It smelled like a Bennigan's... kind of like the scent of pre-prepared food sitting out to thaw
This was yuppie BBQ cateting to the upscale clientle on the North Shore and not a place that I would ever try again. If I'm going to a BBQ joint, I want a hole-in-the-wall place that is going to get my fingers messy and my belly full.
Smoke Daddy's is really good, but very, very smokey... it's almost a little overpowering. The portions are ginormous with lots of options. The sweet potato fries are excellent.