Most of the places I write about are hyped in the pages of Time Out, New York Magazine, or The Times, but sometimes I get a personal recommendation, and discover a relatively unknown gem. When this happens, it’s like Christmas morning, and I get a little giddy. Thanks to our foodtastic friends, and Jackson Heights residents, Kim & Jared, we unwrapped a new (to us) dive bar that serves some of the best barbecue in all of Queens.
Legends Sports Bar / Ranger Texas Barbecue
71-04 35th Avenue, Jackson Heights
I would normally have walked right by Legends, a typical Jackson Heights, sports bar, which it very much is upfront, but further back it turns into Ranger Texas Barbecue serving some of the most tender smoked meats in NYC for extremely low prices. This place changed from Pearson Texas BBQ about 10 years ago, and the new owners kept the smoker, and formed this hybrid joint. Spud and I shared the creatively named Meat Sampler Platter of brisket, pulled pork and 2 kinds of ribs for only $13. With superb corn bread, decent creamed spinach and onion rings, the total was still about $10 per person. All the meat was very moist, with the brisket being the standout. The mild and spicy bbq sauces help add a kick. Kim and Jared ordered the pulled pork and pulled chicken by the pound, which they very much enjoyed. Let me be clear about the ambience, you will be eating out of plastic containers with Gun ‘n’ Roses blasting from the bar, but if you are into excellent barbecue for very little money, this is a place for you.