Louie’s Bar and Rocket Lounge BBQ
Another rough week at work. The bright spot is always when I get a few minutes to actually go out for dinner.
Earlier this week, I was working with the co-worker who likes to find new restaurants with me. We were sitting in the lounge just sort of looking at each sorta bored and really hungry. She wasn’t offering up anything, so I asked about BBQ. There’s a place on the Northwest Side of Grand Rapids that I’ve been itchin’ to get to.
Louie’s Bar and Rocket Lounge BBQ is just off downtown Grand Rapids on Bridge Street just west of Seward. It’s actually two separate spaces connected on the inside. The bar is where the main entrance is, but on busy nights, it’s easy to walk between the two buildings.
C.W and I actually called in a to-go order instead of going out to eat. While I didn’t have anything to do, she still had some work that needed to be taken care of. She handed me some cash and asked if I’d take care of dinner.
I called in the order for our two meals. She ordered the BBQ Pulled Chicken which comes with two sides and cornbread. She chose the mac & cheese and potato salad. I had asked for the Pulled Pork Sandwich, but the lady taking my order said they had run out of pulled pork and were waiting on another one that was in the smoker. Instead I ordered the Texas Beef Brisket Sandwich. That comes with potato chips and hottie pickles.
The order taker asked how far away I was. I said ten minutes and she said it’d be ready by the time I walked in.
Parking was a little rough with so much snow in the area. I found a place to park along the road on Lexington Avenue where I wasn’t in the way then walked back to the bar.
There were only a couple people sitting at the bar enjoying some delicious smelling BBQ when I walked in and I noticed a bag of food on the end of the bar. I assumed that was for me, so I headed that way. The bartender turned around and asked if I was “XX.” I said I was so she printed out the bill for $18 and handed to me while I pulled out my credit card to pay.
When I got back to the office, I tracked down C.W. and handed off her Styrofoam container of food. I did steal one little piece of chicken before I handed to her (shhhh…don’t tell). I actually used it to test the sauce because I had gotten one spicy and one of the house. Still, I was able to tell the tender chicken had a slightly smokey flavor to it and the house sauce, which was already in the container, had a thick, ketchup-y flavor to it. C. W. never did say whether she liked it or not. The only thing I noticed about the whole meal was that the portion size was a little on the small side. I would have liked to have tried the mac & cheese, but I thought that was crossing a line.
As for my meal, the hickory smoked brisket is served on a brioche roll. There were four or five slices of a tender, flavorful brisket. I chose the spicy BBQ sauce which was pretty spicy. It had the seeds from a pepper floating in the thick, red sauce, so I went light on the meat. I would have done that anyway so I could taste that smokey goodness. As with my C.W’s meal, I could have used just a little more meat to make it a hearty sandwich, but even though the brisket was my second choice, it was still pretty tasty. There will just have to be a next time so I can try the pulled pork.
Louie’s Bar and Rocket Lounge is pretty tasty BBQ and a place I would love to sit and drink for a while to wash it all down. Portion sizes were the only real drawback for me. The BBQ wasn’t overly expensive, but I did walk away hungry. The meat is deliciously smokey and that’s all I really want in a good BBQ joint.