The West Michigan Tourist Association recently sent out a press release highlighting the best BBQ in West Michigan.
Their heart was in the right place, but it was a little too… touristy. (FireKeepers Casino Hotel? Really?)
Fortunately, cooler heads have prevailed and Rapid Growth has prepared a simple guide to help you find great, authentic barbecue in the region, this summer and beyond.
Slow’s Bar B-Q
Located at the Downtown Market (435 Ionia Ave. SW).
Traditional meats, sides and a very nice craft beer selection.
Two Scotts Barbecue
Located at 536 Leonard St. NW in a a refurbished root beer stand.
The two Scotts work hard and do a good job with their meats and sides.
Located near Founder’s Brewing (333 Grandville Ave. SW).
Excellent menu with a few twists like crispy brussels sprouts.
Daddy Pete’s BBQ
The pitmaster is always in the house. Cory and his team smoke the meat and serve out of a food truck located at Rosa Parks Circle on Thursdays. Daddy Pete’s is always on the move so check out their website for other locations. Outstanding barbecue.
Pit Stop Catering
Located at 6479 28t St. SE.
Matt and Sue Smith helped catalyze the barbecue scene in the area when they moved their catering operation to a brick and mortar location. Great EVERYTHING. Check out their website for hours.
The Grilling Company
Located at 6231 West River Dr. NE in Belmont, Mich.
Keith Hall is always chopping and stacking wood. That’s a very good sign. This is wood-cooked and smoked barbecue at its best.
Located at 3660 Byron Center Ave. SW in Wyoming, Mich.
A little treasure tucked away on Byron Center. Dallas Deli serves Texas-style BBQ. Very authentic.
Even further afield
Main St. BBQ
Located at 210 E. Main St. in Lowell, Mich.
One of the newer barbecue joints in the region that’s already landing big praise. Real students of the ‘que. Brisket, ribs, butts, and birds -- plus a full menu of sides.
Kurly’s House of Smoke
Located at 8025 Cannonsburg Rd. NE in Cannonsburg Village, Mich.
Really good smoked meats that are served out of a gas-station/breakfast diner/grocery store. Kitty-corner to the famous Honeycreek Inn.
Located at 6394 Adams St. in Zeeland, Mich.
Chef Len is one of the most visible proponents of barbecue in West Michigan. His new place in Zeeland also serves ice cream. That is a winning combo.
West Michigan also boasts multiple outstanding barbecue catering businesses, pig roasters, roadside pits, and barbecue events. Just keep your eyes open and your windows rolled down. Trust the smoke.
Writer: John Rumery, Innovation and Jobs News Editor
Photos courtesy of Pit Stop Catering, The Grilling Company and Grilladelic.