Thursday, October 18, 2012

4 Rivers Smokehouse

I’ve been going to 4 Rivers Smokehouse since they first opened. It has been the #1 restaurant in Orlando on for a couple of years now, and this is simply because they are good at what they do.

The original Winter Park location opened in 2009 and was an immediate success. As it became more and more popular the line out the door became longer and longer. Unless you arrived at around 2:30pm you could forget getting a parking place.

Over the next 3 years they expanded and opened locations in both Longwood and Winter Garden. Finally they have realized that they have outgrown their Winter Park store and relocated a few blocks up Fairbanks Ave. to a much larger building that they built from the ground up. This new location has a much larger parking lot and far more seating options and although you may still have a wait at peak times, it is far easier to “Dine In”.

As you wait in the line until it is your turn you will read the menu and most likely change your mind several times before you actually place your order.

Just as you make a final decision you will see what others before you are ordering and you will wonder if you should have what they are having instead.

You will have preconceived ideas of what your side items will be, and then as you see them scooping up a dish of something that wasn’t even on your radar you will crave it and change your mind.

As a seasoned Four Rivers patron I can offer the following advise:

#1 As tempting and nostalgic as they are, don’t get one of the bottled Soft Drinks at the front counter, instead get a Fountain Beverage. They are many choices inside (including Cheerwine!) and this way you can get free refills.

#2 Don’t get a Dessert at the first line. Once you get inside you will see that there is a whole Sweet Shop inside that features all of the ones from the front as well as many others!

#3 Try their Sliders. You get three and can have a different meat on each one. 

I tried doing this and did One Pulled Chicken,

One Pulled Pork

and One Burnt Ends.

 Through this process I realized that Burnt Ends is my Favorite! (All of Four Rivers Meats are good, try them all and decide which is your favorite!)

#4 Don’t be ashamed to just get a tray full of Sides. I do it all of the time!

Their Green Beans are cooked with Meat and are very flavorful!

They have the Best Fried Pickles that I have ever tasted, they use really thick pickles and they are good and salty.

Their Baked Beans are like Candy! I don't usually order them if I am getting Dessert as well.

and their Cornbread Salad is creamy and unusual - give it a try!

and finally...

#5 Don’t worry about ordering too much, you can always take any extra home with you to enjoy later. I can also guarantee that you will eat it all later that night, so you don’t have to worry about it going to waste.

If you have not been and are still wondering if you should try Four Rivers, the answer is YES. BBQ comes in all kinds of varieties, and no matter what your preferences are they will have something that you really like. You cannot be the #1 Restaurant on for this long without being anything less then outstanding!
4 Rivers Smokehouse on Urbanspoon

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