Serving up lashings of rich and smoky regional American barbecue, Cathead’s BBQ is a taste of country cookin’ at its best. With food served on tin plates and drinks in mason jars, not to mention an interior sporting reclaimed wooden panelling and picnic-style benches, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you’d just stumbled into a down-home BBQ joint in the South, rather than a bright and cheerful restaurant in San Francisco’s SoMa district.
The slow smoked pork shoulder, sweet tea BBQ chicken, and the coca-cola smoked brisket in particular are the flavour-heavy, meltingly-tender standouts of the menu. But it’s surprisingly not all about the meat here, with sides like pimento mac & cheese, dandelion green potato salad and the fiery, tangy habanero slaw punching way above their menu weight. And, in a move that endeared chefs and co-owners Richard Park and Pamela Schafer to vegetarians everywhere, you can even tuck into some seriously hearty veggie fare at Cathead’s BBQ in the form of the maker’s Mark-rubbed Portobello mushrooms.
And for those wondering about the name, just look to the eponymous menu item: the CatHead biscuits. These ever-popular golden buttermilk biscuits – an Appalachian favourite served fresh from the oven with honey butter and pepper jelly – are so named for their size, (thankfully) not their ingredients.