Re:New Pittsburgh BBQ
I have been to A & J Ribs twice now. The place is a new buildout in an old building. There's a counter where you order and other one with maybe 12 stools for dining. In addition, there are several high tables with stools.
On the first visit, I didn't have much time, so I opted for the pulled pork sandwich. That's usually a safe choice; I can't recall a bad one other than long ago in the high school cafeteria. On the other hand, I can't recall having a great one either. A & J's pulled pork fit the profile, a satisfying sandwich but nothing spectacular.
I also didn't have much time on a second visit, but that didn't stop me from ordering the spare rib platter, choosing cole slaw and baked beans as my sides. Unfortunately, I had to wolf down my food in a way that did not encourage later elaborate description of that which was so briefly on my plate. I will report that like pulled pork, the meal was not great, but it was certainly satisfying. The meat itself was well cooked, tender and not overburdened with fat & gristle. The sauce was the sweet tomato sauce, not very spicy, common around here. The baked beans and cole slaw (creamy) were good. The friendliness of the staff was remarkable. I will definitely go back.
This week, I hope to get to Big Mama's House of Soul at its new location downtown.