Bubbalou's Bodacious Bar-B-Que

Restaurant Details

Bubbalou's Bodacious Bar-B-Que seduces you before you even lay eyes on it, which is just what good barbecue ought to do. The siren smell of smoky, sweet meats is in the air outside this new location, just north of Universal Studios Florida. Even from the parking lot, Bubbalou's is alluring, with that bold, unblushing name lit up in neon, flanked by three hot-pink piglets tip-toeing over flames.

Inside, the atmosphere is cheerful and bright. It's roomier than the original Winter Park eatery, but both dish up Big Barbecue. You name it and they smoke it: pork, chicken, beef, turkey, ham, sausage, lamb; and for the barbecue rebel, gizzards and livers. Country music hits are on the sound system, and a stuffed bear rises over the wood-paneled dining room.

My guest and I placed orders at the counter, choosing from an array of sandwiches, baskets and dinners, priced from $2.69 to $8.99. We found seats at a picnic table in back, the only spot that hadn't been claimed by a hungry, lunchtime crowd.

The food soon arrived, and we dived in with abandon. I tried "Bubbalou's Special" ($8.99), a sampler platter with four side-orders, and quickly honed in on the spare ribs. They were divine in the most primal way: succulent on the inside and slightly charred outside. Of the shredded meats, the pork was moist and tender, but the beef was a bit dry by comparison.

My guest ordered the quarter chicken basket with two sides ($3.99). Her chicken, like mine, was glazed to a rich, brown hue. On the inside, it was well-done, yet juicy. While most of the smoked meats stood on their own, we laced them with the barbecue sauces anyway: "Mild" had a hint of sweetness with a gentle bite; "Hot" was warm with a tangy edge; "Killer" was fiery enough to make your mouth glow.

On the side, baked beans were sweetly simmered with pork. The cole slaw was creamy yet light. Corn bread was moist and savory, which was nice given that the grilled bread was a bit limp and unexciting. Ripple-cut french fries were delicious. My only quibble is the size of some side-orders. At $8.99 for a dinner plate combo, I expected more than a cuplet of beans and a dollop of slaw.

Although Bubbalou's was approaching capacity when we arrived, we were on our way with boxed leftovers within 50 minutes. And we swore to do some bodacious workouts so we can go back soon.



  • or


Join Orlando Weekly Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

All Time Low, Gym Class Heroes and more go wild at Hard Rock Live stop in Orlando

All Time Low, Gym Class Heroes, Grayscale and Lauran Hibberd put on a raging masterclass in pop-punk this week as a part…

By Ian Suarez

Grayscale fans at Hard Rock Live
53 slides

This Orlando home comes with a full-size indoor basketball court for $16.5 million

An Orlando lakefront mansion with over-the-top custom amenities and features is on the market for nearly $17 million. The home, located at…

By Chloe Greenberg

This Orlando home comes with a full-size indoor basketball court for $16.5 million
66 slides

20 Orlando restaurants and bars with the best scenic views

It's not hard to find a sizable dining patio in Orlando, but not all outdoor seating is created equal. Whether you're looking…

By Orlando Weekly Staff

Topolino’s Terrace
1080 Esplanade Ave., Lake Buena Vista
Located in the Riviera Resort, Topolino's Terrace offers French and Italian-style eats, for both breakfast and dinner. The restaurant also has an outdoor patio offering sprawling views and a high-end lounging atmosphere.
20 slides

Jawbreaker and Joyce Manor whipped up a multigenerational roar at the House of Blues

A resurgent Jawbreaker roared through the somewhat puzzling location of the House of Blues (a gig's a gig!) as part of a…

By Michael Lothrop

Joyce Manor live at House of Blues
53 slides