Melvins Bar-b-que – Charleston, South Carolina – Ian Marshall

Melvins Bar-b-que – Charleston, South Carolina

2 years…..That is how long I have been waiting to get back to Charleston and go to Melvins Bar-b-que. We were on a 3 day Carolinas concert run to see Assembly of Dust  play at the Pour House on James Island…and by the way, it was one hell of a rocking show… my favorite of the 3 nights. OK, back to Melvin’s… I have been eating at Melvins every couple of years since the early 90’s. I will be the first to tell you that on every blog I write about my pet peeve of pre-sauced BBQ sandwiches…but for some reason the Melvin’s Big Joe is pre-sauced and it is one of my favorites. The pork and mustard based sauce are mixed and the sandwich has the perfect consistency of hardy

meat, sauce and bark. I am sure that if I lived in Charleston, it would not be such a treat. It is kind of like the New Belgium products of beers…the closer they get to Atlanta, the less I crave them. Kind of a supply and demand thing I guess.

This most recent sandwich from Melvin’s brought back many fond memories of Charleston. I have had some really good times there visiting friends at Folly Beach, my buddy’s place in college above Half Moon Outfitters, Palmetto Dunes, The Battery and being my city of choice for the year 2000 celebration. Charleston was recently my answer to a question I was posed… “Where would be your first choice to move tomorrow if money was no option” The restaurants (not all BBQ), the people, the history, fishing and the charm….It is definitely a place that I could see my self really enjoying. Once again I digress…Back to Melvin’s.

I enjoy the mustard based sauce so much that I usually buy it in bulk and send it as little thank you gifts. Not many people are familiar with the mustard based style, and I truly believe it does not get the respect that it deserves. As I have said 50 times, the great thing about peoples’ opinion on BBQ is that no one is 100% right all the time….there are so many types and variations that claiming the best BBQ in America just does not make sense. Sides are also the most important complement to a solid BBQ meal, and I will say that one of the sides on my most recent trip to Melvin’s was a little disappointing. I am so spoiled to eat at restaurants like Fox Brothers (Atlanta), Moe’s (Birmingham) and 12 Bones (Asheville) that have outrageous variations of sides utilizing brisket, pork and some of the best beans I have ever tasted… I was so excited about the homemade chili special at Melvin’s. I was not expecting an all meat chili…it reminded me of the chili that went on the top of a hot dog at the Varsity (Atlanta)…not the type of chili I would expect from a bbq restaurant….but once again…to each his own.

All in all…the Melvin’s Big Joe sandwich (and the all you can top pickles) was everything I had been hoping for over the past 2 years….I look forward to going back again and introducing more people to one of my favorite unique southern BBQ restaurants.

538 Folly Road
Charleston, SC 29412
(843) 762-0511

What are your thoughts about Melvins?

One Response to “Melvins Bar-b-que – Charleston, South Carolina – Ian Marshall”

  1. on 12 Jan 2010 at 7:42 pm mike

    We went to Bessingers and were very disappointed. It’s a fast food BBQ.

    I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.

    Momma Browns is way better….

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