Monday, May 16, 2011

Fun Playing With Smoked Prime Rib at Fat Casual BBQ

We've been hoping to return to Fat Casual BBQ almost since we last walked out their door on Halloween, 2010, but we just haven't been able to manage it. Until Friday night, when one of the Usual Instigators suggested an 8pm meet up to sample the latest creation of Chefs Walter Hyde and Scott Slagle and their amazing crew: smoked prime rib. Let me say that again: smoked prime rib. 

I don't think I've had prime rib since my brother got married, about 18 years ago. Honestly, it's never been one of my favorite things, because it's rarely done well (almost had a joke there, folks). Until now. 

Our group of six assembled at one of Fat Casual's simple tables, and we each ordered the same: smoked prime rib. And some sides - whatever Chef wanted to serve us. The made-from-scratch sides came out first, family-style:

Red Skin Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Cole Slaw

A Less Blurry Look, From Our First Visit In October

Mac N Cheese

A Less Blurry Look, From Our First Visit In October

Warm Sweet Potato Salad

Silly, Isn't It - But I was Steadier on Halloween, So Here's A Clearer Look

Though they do seem to have added some bacon since then, haven't they?

Deep Fried Potato Salad -  From May 13, But You Don't Want to See the Container Shot

Each of these sides, made in-house from real ingredients (locally sourced whenever possible), delivered hearty flavors and textures. And the Deep Fried Potato Salad really surprised - served cold, you'd expect it to be limp, but somehow, there was still a crispy edge to the taters. 

But Fat Casual is all about the meat, baby, and tonight would be no exception.

This, my friends, was a simply perfect hunk 'o cow - prepared like none I had tasted before. Rubbed with a secret, but subtle seasoning, and smoked low and slow for hours - this plate (and the five duplicates enjoyed by my companions) reduced our normally gregarious group to muted moans of melt-in-your-mouth pleasure. I urge you to make your way to Fat Casual (Friday night only, if you are looking for Smoked Prime Rib) and get you some of this!

BTW - those who ate them raved about the locally-sourced pickles. I did sample the radish sandwiched between them, and the brine was indeed lovely, but unfortunately for me, the radish tasted like, well, radish. What I lacked in pickle love, however, I made up for with house-made horseradish sauce love:

OMG - the perfect accompaniment to a perfectly prepared hunk 'o cow.

The horseradish sauce matched the beef so well, in fact, that I had trouble thinking of a good use for the jus, which was far too good to waste, but not really needed to enjoy the juicy, tender beef. Mashed potatoes to the rescue! I recommend the combination.

As we enjoyed our beef, Chef Walter appeared with tastes of Fat Casual's Beef Sausage, which used to be made in house, but is now cranked out by a local purveyor, to Fat Casual's recipe. This taste was served with warm BBQ cabbage, which accented the mild sausage just so.

Chef Walter freely admits that he's more into the freestyle of cooking than the formulas involved in baking. That does not stop Fat Casual from turning out very satisfying desserts - we sampled the Piggy Pudding:

Creamy and redolent of blueberry - how could we not love a dessert called Piggy Pudding?

As it's name suggests, there is nothing fancy about Fat Casual (unless you count the finesse involved in their meat preparation, which is low, slow, flavorful and perfectly textured, and their house-made sauces, which we didn't even get to on this prime-rib dominated evening, but which I thoroughly enjoyed on my last visit). Dress comfortably, preferably in a top that is somewhat expendable, since this type of food can be a little messy! Bring your friends, and anything you might wish to drink that isn't on the menu, and prepare to be wowed by the simple pleasures of beautifully seasoned and smoked meats and house-made sides and sauces at incredibly wallet-friendly prices. If you don't have five others to share with, as we did, the Smoked Prime Rib plate pictured above is available only on Fridays and comes with a side of redskin garlic mashed potatoes, au jus and horseradish sauce for an unbelievable $12.99. Also available (with advance order only) is smoked fried chicken - which I simply must try!

Fat Casual is open Wed -Sun at11:00 am, and closes at 8:00 pm Wed and Thurs, 6 pm Sun and 10 pm Fri-Sat, unless they run out of food earlier! Fat Casual is located at 223 E Highland Rd, Macedonia, OH 44056, call 1-330-748-4690 for more info; the website is here.

Fat Casual BBQ on Urbanspoon


  1. Can't wait to try it!

  2. There is no better BBQ in greater Cleveland! Walter and Scott rock the 'Q and are great guys on top of it!

  3. I went to Fat Casual on Friday based on your review and it definitely lived up to my expectations. What a fantastic find.