Hottie Hawgs Smokin’ BBQ is a small chain, perhaps 3 locations total, with the Atlanta location about 5 minutes off exit 254 on I-75. It’s a west Atlanta locale, and I’d not have gone there had my football meetup not chosen this location as a place to watch football recently. But they did, and Grant Goggans of Marie Let’s Eat had done a review, so I chalked up this place as something to talk about.
This was the first time my meetup had met at this location, but I thought the choice of food and venue were promising. The group had been going to large generic bars. The problem is that meetups of other teams show as well, if the bar is large enough. Hottie’s turned out to be small enough that our group had their entire attention, and if a couple of our folks started getting loud, it wouldn’t turn into a shouting match with the fans of other teams. If, for a couple hours, our group can “personalize” the space they are in, all the better.
I’m saying all this up front because this isn’t the typical review. We entered, were asked if we were part of the meetup, charged a set price and given a set menu. I had no choice in what I ate. I might have wanted a fancier beer, but the meetup was paying for Coors light.
It was a bit of a shame, because Hottie’s has some culinary ambitions. They have 3 smokers, including the competition rig outside. They keep 6 beers on tap, and a useful collection of good beers in bottles. Barbecue can come smoked, or they can broil. The ribs we were served were called their sneaky ribs, a broiled product with a good sauce, and they were quite tasty. Just, smokeheads like myself do like to get fingers on our meat, smell the smoke, know that we have a smoked product.
Among the things we were served, buffet style, was some great looking corn. Perhaps I should have talked someone into eating all but a bite, because I suspect that bite would have been good. Other things we had included wings, quite good. We had plenty of pulled pork, and it wasn’t hard to find bark on that either. They had a stew they served to us, also good. I suspect it was the same as what Grant called their Cooter’s stew. It was tomatoey and flavorful.
Hottie’s is a smaller place, perhaps 10-12 tables and a bar front that seats perhaps ten or so, and so staff was actually fairly lean. I saw a bartender, 2 waitresses, 1 or 2 men bussing tables, and then largely management and kitchen staff. Both the general manager, the chef, and the owner were checking out the buffet spread, making sure it was all there. I was able to speak to the general manager, James Brochu, who allowed me time to talk to the chef, Matthew Mosley. Matthew spoke of their smokers, their competition rig. Matthew also allowed me a photo of their smoked ribs, and a shot of their smoker as well.
It’s this kind of contact with staff that also sets this review apart from the norm. But I don’t think it changes much of the review. Any tasting I did was from the same buffet line as the rest of my crew. The “extras” I think add value to the BBQ smokeheads who want to evaluate the potential for real smoked flavor from this chain.
Hottie Hawg’s BBQ
2057 Main Street NW,
Atlanta GA 30318
Reservations and to go orders: (404) 794-5224