Category Archives: Barbecue

Phil’s BBQ


I apologize in advance for the blech photos, but this is what happens when you use a malfunctioning camera in low lighting. Flash does this food no justice.

When people want great barbecue in San Diego, the first thought that comes to mind is Phil’s BBQ. Every night there is a line out the door and around the corner, so we thought by going at 4:30pm on a Sunday would be in the door in no time.

We waited in line for an hour. So the question is, was it worth it?

When you finally get to the front of the line, you wait your turn to order at the counter. The cashier gives you your receipt and a buzzer, and you find your own table and wait until your order is ready to pick up. Less than 10 minutes went by before all our food was ready. We ordered a full rack of baby back ribs, with fries and baked beans, and a half BBQ chicken with mac salad and coleslaw. We shared a humungous platter of battered onion rings with the couple we dined with.

The baby back ribs were seasoned with a dry rub, and we dipped them in BBQ sauce on the side. The seasoning wasn’t overpowering, and the meat was tender and smoky and flavorful. The fries were ok, and I didn’t try the baked beans but I heard they were pretty good, with a smoky flavor.


The BBQ half chicken was slathered in BBQ sauce, which was fine by me. The dark meat was juicy and captured all the smoky flavor wonderfully, but the white meat was a bit on the dry side. I guess it happens since it was probably smoked, the put on the grill right before it’s served. The coleslaw was amazing and the mac salad was tasty.


These monstrous onion rings were to die for. They were as big as my face. I ate 3 of them (ok ok, the 3rd one was puny but still counts). The thick batter was satisfyingly crunchy. The onion didn’t slither out like they usually do in other places, and they held up well with the batter. I’d order a plate of these for myself if I didn’t fear for my health.

We compared Phil’s to another joint we liked on the East Coast, Dinosaur BBQ. Which one was better? It’s a tough call. For the sides, I would say that Phil’s has better onion rings and coleslaw, while Dinosaur has their cajun corn and fried green tomatoes. For the chicken, both places are a tie. For the ribs…’s hard to compare since they’re different. I guess it depends on your preference. Phil’s has a more smoky, meaty taste, and Dinosaur has strong, tangy kick in every bite. Sometimes it gets to be overpowering, if you like that sort of thing. If you don’t want to burp and taste ribs all night, I’d recommend Phil’s.

We’ll add this place to our favorites whenever we crave BBQ. But we probably won’t wait in line that long again. Good thing you can phone in your order and pick it up.

Phil’s BBQ

Phone: 619 226-6333
3750 Sports Arena Blvd
San Diego, CA 92110

4th of July BBQ.


This past holiday weekend, we went to a couple of BBQ picnics around town. The cupcake flag went to the first picnic. My camera went to the second picnic, which was at my parents’ cottage.

Here are a few photos of various things around the area:





There was a wasps’ nest above us, see that?







Don’t worry, the rust was all removed from the grill before we started cooking.

They had another grill they usually use, but I think it broke, so this old-fashioned one came to use.


If you would like the marinade recipe for these chicken wings, click here.

The secret to keeping these moist and tender is to bake them at 375 degrees for half an hour, then put ‘em on the grill just to get the skin crispy (approx. 10 minutes, flipping once halfway through), as shown in the picture below.


The extra step seems like a hassle, but I think it makes it easier to BBQ. At least for my parents.





Ribs, and shrimp skewers with peppers and onions.


Recipe for Portobello mushrooms here. With the correct proportions of ingredients for the marinade.

You’ll see what I mean when you read below…

Instead of cooking them on the George Foreman grill as I did in the previous post, put them on the grill as shown below.


You know how I botch everything I cook when I’m with my parents? Well, here’s my story:

Since my parents usually cook everything for the meal, I don’t bring anything. But I insisted that I bring Portobello mushrooms, because I had this great recipe for grilling them. My mom asked me what I used to marinate them, I told her the ingredients, and she said she had them at the cottage already.

And I should’ve brought my own marinade, because of course, she didn’t have one major ingredient (Italian seasoning). When I asked her for the seasoning, she gave me a packet of Italian dressing powder mix.

Me: What’s this?!

Mom: It’s Italian seasoning.

Me: No, it says it’s DRESSING mix.

Mom: It’s Italian seasoning.

Me: No, it says it’s Italian Dressing mix. This is different than Italian Seasoning Spice.

So I pour some powdered dressing mix into my marinade. With 2 tsp. oil and 6 tsp. red wine vinegar.

Mom: Are you sure that’s enough (vinegar)? It doesn’t look like enough.

Me: Fine. I’ll add more (botches the whole marinade).

I added a few too many teaspoons of vinegar. They came out sour.  I’m starting to understand why everyone thinks I’m a bad cook.

*Note to self*: Oh, why even bother. I’ll probably botch the next dish up anyway.

Hence the self-deprecating sense of humor you see quite often on this blog.


If you would like the recipe for Vegetable Casserole, click here.


The end.

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