I went to Chubby’s by accident. Sort of.
My original plan was to visit family and eat at the Dixie Pig in Blytheville, Arkansas, and then cross the Mississippi just above Blytheville en route to Helen’s in Brownsville, Tennessee, on Day 2 of my Great Memphis Region Barbecue Sandwich Tour. The first hitch in that plan was the suggestion that I try the barbecue at the Kream Kastle in Blytheville. After a sandwich there, I returned to the Helen’s plan and headed north to the Mississippi bridge near Caruthersville in the Missouri Bootheel.
Once I was in Missouri, a severe thunderstorm erupted, and driving was a nightmare. What to do? I realized I was only a short drive from Hayti and Chubby’s B-B-Q. An FBI agent with whom I was working recommended Chubby’s to me about 15 or 20 years ago. I tucked that one away, and recently my friend Justin Hunter, who is from Southeast Missouri and a big barbecue fan, mentioned Chubby’s. I figured that Chubby’s might be a good place to give the storm a chance to move on out of my path. See? An accident.
Chubby’s is a small, unassuming place.
Chubby’s has an extensive menu. They offer ribs, they smoke brisket, ham, and chicken; and you can get various fried foods, all fried in peanut oil, which is good, allergies permitting. There are some quirks. Broccoli Poppers? Aren’t Poppers supposed to be jalapeño poppers? I guess they’re fried broccoli pieces, which seem like a bad idea. Chubby’s also sells fried pickles, but they fry spears rather than chips. Big mistake.
The decor at Chubby’s includes lots of pigs, signs, and pictures of friends, neighbors and some celebrities. There are autographed photos of Randy Travis, Brad Paisley, and a few I didn’t recognize from a distance. The walls are an unusual plywood.
You don’t see that look much.
I ordered a regular pork sandwich.
Maybe they gave me a Jumbo sandwich by mistake. That’s a whole lot of meat. And it is very good meat, cooked over wood, with a good chop, and a good bit of the outside bark. As with the Blytheville places, the meat is topped with raw cabbage, which is very good for flavor and texture.
The only problem is the sauce. The sauce is sweet, and the sweetness tends to mask the flavor of the meat, as I discussed ad nauseam in re: Central BBQ. It isn’t as problematic as the sauces you can buy in your grocery stores or the Central BBQ sauce, but the sauce does detract from the meat, and the meat, at least for me, is the main attraction, the reason you buy the sandwich.
I realize that sweet sauce will not be a problem for many, probably most people.
(Sigh.) If you like sweet sauces, and if you’ve worked up a big appetite, definitely give Chubby’s a try. Otherwise, drive down to Blytheville and do the Dixie Pig – Kream Kastle comparison.
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