March Madness at the Waterfront Ale House
On Monday night, March Madness woke like a lion with an outstanding meal at The Waterfront Ale House with the New York BBQ Lover's Meetup Group. Sam Barbieri and his cook Ralph really put out an incredible feast for us. Going to the Waterfront Ale House was a bit of a departure for the group as we usually focus on "BBQ joints" and Sam describes the Ale House as a "restaurant that serves food with a small selection of barbecue."
First up was chicken bacon poppers. Jalapeno peppers filled with cheese, wrapped by thin chicken breast and encased in house smoked bacon and glazed with barbecue sauce. How could you go wrong?
These were just fantastic. I could have eaten a dozen of these, but unfortunately I had to share with my other group members.
I don't know if it's just me, but jalapenos don't seem to have the heat they used to. Most of these jalapenos were very mild, so much so that some of the folks at the table thought the "green stuff" was spinach.
Up next were some house double smoked bacon BLTs and margarita buffalo shrimp. Now I was in heaven. The margarita buffalo shrimp is marinated in Sam's own house made hot sauce. Now that is some good stuff. These shrimp were huge, spicy and sweet at the same time. Again, I didn't want to share. I wonder if Sam will share this recipe.
The BLT's were a bit a of a miss. The dominant flavor in this sandwich was the bun. A great bun that it is, I still prefer the fillings to dominate the flavor of my sandwiches.
The filling that were there were tasty, but the bacon was overcooked. I really liked the sauce, but I didn't get a chance to really explore it. Was it a home made Russian dressing or more of a tarter sauce? Maybe one of the other members of the group can tell me.
This was followed by barbecue bologna sandwiches. Sam and Ralph take Boar's Head bologna and smoke it in house.
I have to admit that I approached these sandwiches a bit cautiously. It's been a long time since I've had bologna and the last time someone gave me a "smoked bologna" sandwich it made me gag. Childhood memories don't help when it comes to my relationship with bologna. It was always the "loser" sandwich as I was growing up.
Not that it happened here! The smoked bologna was flavorful and moist. I really enjoyed these, although in this case, I would have preferred to lose one layer of meat. Sometimes the texture of bologna is a little tough for me to take.
This post is getting a bit long and I'm still not done with the appetizers. More tomorrow. While you're waiting, get your butt over to the Waterfront Ale House, either in Brooklyn or on Second Avenue in Manhattan. Trust me you'll be glad you did.