Cincinnati's Montgomery Inn, The Ribs King

Some people eat salads and drink green smoothies before Thanksgiving rolls around so they're ready for the food fest that is turkey, stuffing and pies. My family? Our Thanksgiving prepping was more like a study in stomach expansion. My brother just moved to Ohio and well, when in Ohio, you go big or go home. My Cincinnati airport pick up did not pass home for a bag drop-off. It went directly to the World Famous Montgomery Inn where you order, and I quote, "The full slab. Even if you can't finish it, you'd better respect it." Oh, I was a long way from plant based vegan friendly Los Angeles.

We weren't the only one's enjoying the Ribs King where they've been "rockin' the sauce since 1951." There were so many options of what you could put under that sauce and what you could get on the side and how many courses for what price that it takes us a while and a few drinks to sort it all out.

The Montgomery Inn barbecue

We ordered to cover all the proteins, and then we suited up. The recommended attire at the Montgomery Inn is bibs. Yes, bibs. They are not messing around here. They want you to enjoy the ribs, the sauce and heck even their blue cheese is dressing is homemade and of course topped with bacon.

Then there's the chips. Chips, who cares, right? I said the same thing, but again I quote directly from the menu, "it's kind of a sin not to try these." That's right. These fresh cut grade A jumbo potatoes are made daily and of course there's homemade barbecue sauce for dunking. Don't be a sinner. Indulge.

20 tons of ribs are made each week at The Montgomery Inn. They use a dry rub and then a sweeter tomato-molasses sauce for topping, pooling, mopping and bib slinging. The ribs were indeed finger licking, but the critic in me just wished they were a little juicier - more fall off the bone, succulent, moist, more - not more sauce. There was plenty of sauce, and the sauce was goooood.

The Montgomery Inn duck

The duck, however, was the sleeper hit. Who orders duck? Well luckily my nephew did and I have to say I thought it was the winner of the evening. Again I quote, "there's nothing lame about this duck." It had the juiciness and tenderness I was looking for.

The shrimp, pass. They were fried, which was a bummer. No need. Focus on the meats. Get the duck. The obligatory mac and cheese is obligingly cheesy and covered in bread crumbs, but there is steamed broccoli and mixed vegetables if you're at all feeling virtuous, but then why would you be at the Montgomery Inn the day before Thanksgiving.

There was no easing up on dessert. Thanksgiving training was in full effect and some of the barbecue meal deals including rich chocolate covered cheesecakes and more chocolate covered profiteroles. The bib stayed on and we played through.

Before the turkey hit the table, we had one more belly busting stop. You can't go to Cincinnati and not have the famous Skyline Chili. Take an antacid. There's more to come.