Abita Springs: 69399 LA Hwy 59. 985-892-0205. Map.
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WHY IT’S NOTEWORTHY
The best barbecue joint in West St. Tammany, and one of the best in the entire area, Abita Barbecue slow-smokes everything. They’ll make almost anything on their menu into either a sandwich (even a poor boy, if you like) or a platter. Daily special platters of the kind you’d find in a corner cafe are also good. Abita Barbecue makes up large quantities of their food for parties, and the prices are a terrific bargain.
Barbecue is all about smoke, seasoning, and flavor intensity. All of that is here. Pork is the best of the Abita’s work, notably the ribs and the pulled pork shoulder. The brisket is smoky, moist, and thinly sliced. They make their own barbecue sauce, and it’s excellent. And this is the only place I know with smoked boudin–a terrific snack as you tool down the highway.
It started in a gas station in 1994, and drew a large enough clientele to be able to move to a real restaurant a few years later.
Two large, very casual dining rooms where you’ll feel right at home licking your fingers clean while digging into the smoky pork, brisket, ribs and chicken. Like most barbecue restaurants, it’s self-service all the way. Like the best ones, even that is a little slower than you might expect. (Barbecue can’t be hurried at any stage.)
Pulled barbecue pork, sandwich or platter.
Barbecue ribs, sandwich or platter.
Barbecue brisket, sandwich or platter.
Barbecue chicken, sandwich or platter.
Daily plate specials, especially beans.
Macaroni and cheese.
Corn on the cob.
White chocolate bread pudding.
FOR BEST RESULTS
Know that this is not fast food, especially not when they’re busy. Order a bit less than you might guess; portions are very large.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVEMENT
The consistency record is less than perfect, and has affected almost everything here at one time or another.
FACTORS OTHER THAN FOOD
Up to three points, positive or negative, for these characteristics. Absence of points denotes average performance in the matter.
- Dining Environment
- Consistency -1
- Value +2
- Attitude +1
- Wine & Bar
- Local Color +1
- Courtyard or deck dining
- Good view
- Open all afternoon
- Quick, good meal
- Good for children
- Easy, nearby parking