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Barbecue Review: The Shed – Ocean Springs, MS

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Hello friends! On a recent trip, I had the pleasure of going to one of my favorite barbecue haunts: The Shed in Ocean Springs, MS. This is the tale of the tasty treats that I experienced.

My Barbecue Review.

The main course

I opted for two of their entrees. First, I chose their “Wangs”. The Wangs are a smoked wing done right. This meat is going to fall right off the bone. Believe me. I attempted to bite into the wing only to have the meat fall onto my plate. Don’t worry, I didn’t mind. That was a happy revelation because the flavor was off the charts.

The Wangs used The Shed’s Southern Sweet barbecue sauce, which is probably my favorite sauce for various reasons. This sauce works perfectly with the wings because present in the seasoning is a fair amount of black pepper. I find that the sweet of the sauce balances out the bite of the black pepper nicely.

The next entrée I chose was the Red Angus Meyer beef brisket. Go ahead, ask me how thick the smoke ring was. What if I told you it was almost a quarter of an inch deep? You read that right. The brisket had a truly wonderful flavor.
It was nice and tender with a very savory taste. I hypothesize that the fat content was the main reason for this. I want to point out that the brisket did not have a gristly consistency. In fact, quite the contrary.

On the brisket was the Southern Sweet sauce, like the Wangs. I enjoyed it because I generally like a sweeter sauce on my barbecue. However, I found that the better pairing was the Shed’s vinegar barbecue sauce. Since there was a wonderful fat rendering in the brisket, I found that I needed a good tang to go with it. Here’s what I did: I combined the vinegar sauce with a little bit of Southern Sweet to get a sweet and tangy best of both worlds. Try it out, I hope you’ll like it!

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The sauces

Here I’m just going to give you a roundup of the sauces I tried. I really enjoyed the Southern Sweet and the vinegar (like a Carolina sauce but a bit thicker). The Shed also has a mustard sauce that is sort of the marriage of the Southern Sweet and a pure mustard. It’s nice and sweet, possessing enough mustard to be pleasant. It’s not harsh, like a strong mustard can be. I think it would pair nicely with a pork dish. I didn’t order one, so I probably did not experience the full benefits of this mustard sauce.

The sides

My first choice was sweet potato fries, but at the time of my arrival, their fryers were down because they were being upgraded. Alas, I had to go with my second choices. I opted for their collard greens and macaroni and cheese.

The mac and cheese was wonderfully creamy with the perfect amount of cheese. My usual gripe with mac and cheese is that it’s either too smooth without enough cheese or too much cheese and not creamy enough. No complaints here, this mac was top shelf.

The collard greens were tasty, but I found myself overwhelmed by the amount of black pepper used in the recipe. As some of you may already know, I’m not the biggest fan of black pepper. I feel it is more likely to be overused than used with great efficacy. My usual experience is when the natural flavor of the base food is covered up by the taste of the black pepper. If you like black pepper, that’s fine.

If you’re a fan of the base food then it’s a bad thing. I personally love the un-encumbered flavor of good collard greens, so I was mildly disappointed that I couldn’t enjoy this flavor due to the black pepper. However, the greens were cooked to tender perfection.

The ambience

The Shed has a killer vibe. It’s definitely one of the more unique places I’ve eaten. The entire facility is technically outdoors (except for the kitchen). When you dine at The Shed, you’re basically sitting underneath a large porch, on picnic tables or chairs and bar, with gravel under your feet. There are rooms, of a sort.
However, the rooms are separated by walls with open doorways. So much interesting memorabilia lines the walls that you have plenty to look at while you wait on your food. Additionally, the weekends feature some of the best blues bands around. Also note their famous $1 bills pinned to the ceilings.

Final thoughts

I very much enjoy The Shed. It’s a great place with a family friendly atmosphere where you can relax and enjoy some fantastic ‘cue and amazing music. If you fall in love with their sauces, you can also take them home with you and the products are available in many local and national grocery stores. Check out The Shed. I don’t believe you’ll regret it!

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