Restaurant Review: Dickey’s BBQ Pit

Address: 1385 S. State Street (right next to Sunflower Market)

Rating: 8.5 of 10 forks

I went to Dickey’s BBQ Pit on State Street in Orem on Tuesday. I had been wanting to try them out, because BBQ is pretty much my favorite lunch food. And dinner food. And breakfast.. You get the point.  When I showed up, I learned that Tuesday is ‘buy one pulled pork sandwich, get one free’ day at Dickey’s. That made sense to me, so I opted for those two sandwiches and a side of fried onion tanglers.

The sandwich consists of a pretty good hamburger bun, which I think is made on site, which is also buttered and toasted—and a generous 4 ounces of pulled pork. You can get onions, pickles, and BBQ sauce on it as well. No raw onions for me.

Food is served on a thick, faux-wood plate covered by a piece of brand-consistent parchment paper. The sides come in card-paper dishes.

My sandwiches were ready right away, with my onion tanglers taking another couple of minutes. They brought the tanglers to my table.  I got small containers of both the sweet and the spicy BBQ sauces that they have available in large vats.

The pulled pork sandwiches were well above average. Pulled pork, to be worthy, needs to be moist, tender, have varying chunk size, and have the right combination of salt and sweet. This pulled pork needed a slightly stronger marinade, but its texture was perfect.  Yes, I just called the texture of a prepared meat ‘perfect.’ That doesn’t happen much. I temper that rating with the statement that it needed a bit more flavor. Yes, BBQ sauce is going to be slathered all over the stuff, but it still needs its own distinct flavor. I don’t want BBQ flavored pork, I want delicious pulled pork that is enhanced with delicious BBQ sauce.

So what about the sauce? Dickey’s house BBQ sauce is good. It needs more smoke and a little more substance, but it is tangy and full of flavor.  The sweet sauce was not much different from the house stuff, and the spicy BBQ sauce was quite spicy. Very heavy on the red pepper flakes. All in all, Goodwood’s BBQ sauce is better, and the sauce at that place in Austin is still, by far, better than anything else on the planet.

The onion tanglers were good, although a titch too salty. I poured sauce on them and ate them with a fork.

While I was waiting briefly for my sandwiches, I watched one of the workers take out a large cut of brisket. Pepper rub didn’t fall off it, so I was concerned. I decided I would go to Dickey’s again yesterday to try it with my coupon.  My concern was justified; the brisket needed more flavor. It was cooked to perfection—seriously, these guys know their meat temperatures. But it needed more pepper rub. Lots more.

On my second visit, I got the waffle iron fries. They were short on salt, but nice and crispy.

All in all, Dickey’s prices, at least in Orem, Utah, are very reasonable for the amount of food you get. The meats are done quite nicely, despite being somewhat short on flavor. The buns are nothing special, but they don’t dissolve when slathered with BBQ sauce. I’ll try the cole slaw next time.

Also, there’s free ice cream (soft serve) and free huge pickles. I recommend the pickles.

Finally, they have two large-screen TVs on the walls, which are tuned to ESPN. That’s a win.

About jaredgarrett

Jared Garrett is the author of Beat, a YA scifi thriller, and its forthcoming sequel, both published by Future House Publishing. A new series, debuting in January 2016 and also published by Future House, kicks off with Lakhoni, a fast-paced rescue adventure in a world reminiscent of Aztec culture, to be released in January 2016. He self-published Beyond the Cabin, a novelization of his childhood in a cult, in December 2014. Both Beat and Beyond the Cabin were Whitney Award nominees, and his story Song of the Wind, received honorable mention in the Writers of the Future contest. In addition to writing, he's spent fifteen years in adult education and is an accomplished public speaker and workshop leader.
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