By Brad Wetmore on Mar 05, 2008
I love "dives." You know those places that you look at from the outside, and say..."hmm..." But with lines out the door, you know they must be doing something right. Once you get inside, you know there's something special going on in the kitchen. My wife has always accused me of taking her to only the "finest" establishments, but this one almost killed her.
A little backstory: As my little brother was graduating from college, he was seduced by the Dark Side and moved to Redmond Washington to work for the large unnamed software company based there. coughcough\*bluescreenofdeath\*coughcough It made for interesting family dinner conversations, as dad was always trying to get his boys to talk smack about each other's company. Sorry, Dad, I'm not Scott McNealy!
Apparently all visitors to the Microsoft campus have to make the pilgrimage to Dixie's BBQ in Bellevue. The walls are adorned with about a dozen maps each with hundreds of colorful pins, each signifying where a previous customer was born. The place is infamous for its colorful characters, pretty good BBQ, and "The Man."
So how does one describe "The Man?" Imagine one of the lowest fiery Circles of Hell, say those reserved for corrupt politicians, people who commit simony, or OpenJDK developers who break the build. Now imagine these people are served a nice BBQ lunch. As this is Hell, the BBQ sauce is punishingly spicy, somewhere just between "Dave's Insanity Sauce" and "Lord, if you would just remove this molten lava from my mouth, I won't ever _______ again!!!" Now, place a couple of gallons of that BBQ sauce in a large cauldron, and allow it to simmer/reduce for several years, to the volume of a small quart pot. Now give this pot to a Bellevue Washington restaurateur named Gene Porter, and have him walk around his restaurant asking if you've met "The Man."
Fortunately, for most people, Gene is nice, and only dips the tip of a toothpick into his concoction, or if you're unlucky, the tip of a spoon. Whatever you do, don't say something stupid like say "I love hot sauce!" For those
idiotspeople, Gene scrapes the bottom of the pot. Trust me, you don't want to be anywhere near when that happens.
For years my brother had warned us about "The Man". I've even had some at family picnics. But until last weekend, I'd never had it straight from the pot. Whoa Nelly! Fortunately, I was in control of the camera, and got to capture my wife's reaction. She's not normally that pink! It took 15 minutes and a lot of peanuts, but was finally able to speak again. She gave us a very memorable quote: "That would make a great diet aid!" I wasn't sure if she meant on the way in, or out.
A few other reviews of "Dixie's":