Monday, November 28, 2011

G.T. South's Rib House

Back on the BBQ quest, we finally got around to trying GT South’s. It is literally like 5 minutes from our house, and we had actually eaten there once before, but it was years ago, pre-blog, so we thought it our duty to check it out again.  Instead of carrying out, like we often do with BBQ, we took the kids and ate there.  It is an extremely casual place (ok, it is a little low on atmosphere), and totally kid friendly.
On our current quest, we tend to order the same things in general, not just because they are the things we tend to like, but because it is sort of easier to compare places if you get similar things.  Hubby got the baby back rib dinner ($12.50) and I got a combo plate with pulled pork and pulled chicken ($11.50) (you don’t see that everywhere and I liked the idea of it).  Both dinners came with a cornbread muffin and 2 sides.
They have several sauces—basically mild, hot, 911 and a North Carolina vinegar sauce.  You can either get your food “smothered” with the sauce or you can do it yourself at the table.  I figured I would just get mine dry and try all the sauces.  And I asked for some of the vinegar sauce on the side, because I had never had it before (that one is not out on the table).  So the chicken was like pulled pork—shreds of meat that was described as a mix and white and dark meat.  It was pretty heavy on the white meat on my serving, which was a little disappointing because it was dry and didn’t have a lot of flavor.  Even after pouring the sauce on, it just wasn’t really worth eating.  The pork was much better—more flavorful for sure, although still pretty dry.  When mixed with a bunch of the sauce, it was ok.  I actually thought I would like the vinegar sauce because I tend to like vinegar based things, but I really didn’t care for it.  It was very thin and was quite hot. It tasted like there was quite a bit of hot sauce and cayenne in there.  The vinegar was kind of lost in the heat for me.  Probably my favorite of the sauces was the mild—the hot wasn’t crazy hot, spiced up with pepper flakes, and not a lot different.  But the mild just had a nice rich flavor that I enjoyed.
Hubby’s ribs were also just fine.  They were a little tougher than we tend to like them—quite a bit of force was required to pull the meat off the bone.  And the bites I had had a fair amount of fattiness.  They certainly did not live up to his memories of Squealers’ ribs.  The sides were kind of a mixed bag.  The mac and cheese was basic—it seemed homemade, but there was nothing about it that made it stand out.  It was pretty much noodles and cheddar.  A little bland.  We both probably liked the potato salad the best—it was a mustard and mayo- based dressing with red-skinned potatoes and not sweet at all.  It wasn’t amazing, but better than most I have had lately and the best thing we had as a side.  Hubby had mashed potatoes and gravy, and they were pretty standard. Homemade? Not so sure about that.  The kids were happy though as mashed potatoes are one of their favorite things.  He also had cole slaw which was pretty standard as well.  Similar to KFC.  I should say though that while none of them were amazing, as a whole, the sides were better than a lot of BBQ places we have had.  The cornbread was in a muffin form and was extremely dry and crumbly.
Pulled chicken & pork with sauce

It was kind of funny though because my son ordered ribs and my daughter a grilled cheese off the kids’ menu and she ended up liking the ribs and he wanted her grilled cheese, so basically they ended up switching.  Typical. We saw they had cobblers for dessert and asked if they were made in house.  Our server told us “they are warmed up in house…” We passed.  They do carry seasonal pies from a local bakery and my son was happy to see they had pumpkin so he and hubby split that.
All in all, I would say G.T. South’s is not going to be at the top of our list for BBQ.  Hubby has found ribs at several other places he prefers and nothing I had made me want to go back.  Too bad too that one of the places so close to us wasn’t our favorite (or even close). But our search continues….
G.T. South’s Rib House
5711 East 71st Street
Indy  46220

G.T. South's Rib House on Urbanspoon


  1. Sounds like you reached more or less the same conclusions that I did about this place. I still wish there was a good bbq place near either the Fishers or Castleton area. Sigh.

  2. It's a very basic place but we go back there a lot. I love that it is casual, locally owned, decent food and CHEAP!

  3. I enjoy some items at GT South's - I agree that the pulled chicken is pretty horrible (the whole/half/quarters are the way to go). On a day like today, for me their Beef Manhattan can't be beat. Sure, I bet the brown gravy is out of a can... but the touch of smoke is an interesting twist to the comfort staple. If I'm not getting that, it is a jumbo pulled pork sandwich with a side of slaw. And when she was eating meat, my wife loved the smoked turkey sandwich (served hot or cold).

    I don't think it is earth-shattering Q, but it is also close to home and I think there are some solid dishes and good values to be had.

  4. Brent, agreed. Don't seem to be blessed with good bbq on this side of town for sure.

    Gern and Tom, yes, there is clearly a loyal clientele who support GT South's based on our visit. And it is a pretty good value. Too bad nothing I had made me want to go back...

  5. We take our turkeys for Thanksgiving and Christmas to GT South's to have them smoked. They do a great job and it's one less thing to worry about on those days when you're hosting a big family.

  6. Black Diamond which is just down the street is definitely worth trying for BBQ. Their sides are AMAZING. The brisket, pulled pork, etc. are pretty good as well.