Open since: Sept. 18
Location: Ribs 'n' Blues is located in a new shopping center near the intersection of Sugarloaf Parkway and Five Forks Trickum Road in Lawrenceville. It sits beside Johnny's New York-Style Pizza, Firehouse Subs and Smoothie King.
Owners: Ron and Judy Brooks, their son Bret and his wife Danielle
Hours: Ribs 'n' Blues is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturdays.
Atmosphere: True to the eatery's name, the Brooks clan decked the walls of this "fast casual" barbecue joint with sizable posters and stylized portraits - some mounted on sheet metal - of famous bluesmen like Bo Diddley and B.B. King.
Tunes by those artists and their contemporaries play over the speakers as well, and there's patio dining and a stage in the back corner that on Friday and Saturday nights hosts - you guessed it - blues bands.
The restaurant's kitchen is located behind the counter, so curious patrons can watch as their food is prepared once they order it.
"We're not afraid to show you what our kitchen looks like," Ron Brooks said.
The menu: Blues being its entertainment option of choice, you can probably guess what the restaurant's forte is in the food department (Hint: Look again at the name.)
That's right, Ribs 'n' Blues specializes in sauce-smothered slabs of slow-smoked pork ribs. How slow? The Brookses cook their pork butts for 10 hours overnight - the restaurant's tongue-in-cheek motto is that it offers the "best butts in Georgia" - and prepare their barbecue sauce fresh each day.
Those rib racks and piles of pulled pork won't be left lonely on your plate, either - the menu is populated with plenty of side items to choose from. Coleslaw is a favorite here, as are the rum baked beans and the Brunswick stew, a barbecue standby.
"Our (stew) is a little different from everybody else's," Ron Brooks said.
Beverages: Ribs 'n' Blues offers beer by the pitcher, and there are five choices on tap, including Sam Adams, Sweetwater 420, Bud Light, Miller Lite and Bass Ale. Bottled beers include Heineken, Corona, Michelob Light and O'Douls, and Sutter Home wines are also available. The restaurant also serves soft drinks, iced tea and bottled water.
Dessert: "Nana B," the enigmatic figure credited with cooking up the restaurant's sweeter confections, is actually Judy. Mrs. Brooks prepares fresh pecan pie and brownies daily.
Things you might not know: Ron Brooks eagerly touts one of the rib restaurant's more unique features: free ice cream. A machine toward the back doles out soft-serve to anyone who wants it, and Brooks said it's not always who you'd think.
"Come to find out, the adults like that more than the kids," he said.
Another thing some people don't know is that Lawrenceville's Ribs 'n' Blues location ain't the Brookses' first rodeo in the restaurant business - it's their second. Ribs 'n' Blues has been operating on 5th Street in Midtown Atlanta for four years.
SideBar: On the Menu
Full slab: Plateful of slow-smoked pork ribs smothered in homemade sauce ($18).
Half slab: A more moderately portioned rack ($9).
Rib sandwich: A hefty, bone-in helping of ribs, served sandwich-style ($6).
"Big J" Sandwich: A jumbo pile of pulled pork on a big bun ($7).
10-piece wings: Chicken wings served plain or slathered in mild, hot or BBQ sauce ($7).
Salad: Served with your choice of vinaigrette, ranch or blue cheese dressing ($3).
Extra BBQ sauce: Because you can never have enough ($.25).