Bub City brings bourbon and barbecue together

Bub City brings bourbon and barbecue together

ABC Hungry Hound |
Feb 8, 2013

Food fans of a certain age might remember “Bub City,” a sprawling crab shack and barbecue joint on the Near North Side. Lettuce Entertain You has revived the concept, moved it to River North and added live music.

The focus now is on barbecue and bourbon.

Bourbon and barbecue have to be one of the greatest pairings of all time. Throw in a roadhouse vibe with some occasional live music and you’ve got a reborn Bub City in River North

It takes some of its cues from the original up on Weed Street which closed more than a decade ago.

“Greatly influenced by all of the great stuff on the menu, the crab shack part of it, we have a seafood bar, ribs and keepin’ it southern and keepin’ it fun,” said Chef Doug Psaltis.

Whiskey – specifically, bourbon – is the highlight at the bar, where cocktails come either on tap or assembled by hand.

Psaltis and his team serve barbecue styles from all over the country.

Brisket gets a dry rub featuring cayenne and black pepper, then hits the smoker for more than 10 hours. Pork shoulder comes in from the Ozarks in Missouri, and gets the same rub, before being slow-smoked, just like the ribs.

“We’re definitely inspired by some of the great links in Texas, some of the burnt ends in KC; pulled pork North Carolina style; then we did, what do we do with it? So it’s kind of Chicago-style, our style barbecue,” said Psaltis.

The differences are evident when the proteins are done smoking: the brisket is generously sliced and it can also be chopped.

The pork, however, is combined with some additional vinegar sauce and seasoning, once it’s completely pulled apart.

The ribs get a quick brush of sauce before being finished under a broiler.

Still, there is plenty of evidence of a nice pink smoke ring on the interior layer, and there’s even a few surprises, like Texas-style bone-in short ribs and a nod to Jewish soul food with smoked pastrami, served on a platter with potato pancakes, rye bread and ‘slaw, plus requisite sides of grainy mustard, sour cream and applesauceChicken is also smoked or

Chicken is also smoked or fried.. In the case of the latter, it can be ordered plain or spicy.

“It’s three-quarters habanero and a little bit of Fresno chilies; grind ’em, ferment ’em and make a little bit of a spicy sauce with it,” he said.

In another nod to Kansas City, Psaltis also sells burnt ends.

“Burnt ends are like the candy of the beef. It’s that fatty cap off the brisket; we take it off, we chop it up, a little more spice and smoke it for another three hours,” he said.

Burnt ends are definitely unique. You don’t see them in that many barbecue joints in Chicago. But the one item that is truly unique – I’d only seen in Central Texas up to this point – is this massive, smoked short rib, and I say, welcome to town.

The restaurant also has a country music night karaoke and a take-out option if you want to call ahead.

Media Contact

Emily Clark pr@leye.com 773-878-7340

You May Also Like...

In The Restaurants
Because Mac & Cheese Deserves Its Own Holiday
Jul 14, 2018

In celebration of National Mac & Cheese day on July 14, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite…

read more >
In The Restaurants
All The Reasons Why We Love Fried Chicken
Jul 4, 2018

Fact: there's never a bad time for fried chicken. Grab it on your way to the beach, order it up for…

read more >
How To
Perfect Pair: Champagne & Fried Chicken
Jul 3, 2018

Fried chicken and Champagne? Really? Yep, you read that right. Kevin Bratt, Wine Director of Joe's…

read more >
In The Restaurants
4th of July 2018
Jul 3, 2018

It's that time of year to don your red, white and blue, fire up the grill and, of course, celebrate…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Your Summer Ice Cream Checklist
Jul 2, 2018

I SCREAM, YOU SCREAM...we all know the drill so let's get to the good stuff. July is National Ice…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Your Perfect Fried Chicken Sandwich is Served
Jul 2, 2018

You can roast ‘em, you can bake ‘em, and you can grill ‘em, but nothing tantalizes the taste…

read more >
In The Restaurants
The Best Time of the Year: Patio Season
Jun 20, 2018

Warm weather is here, which means al fresco dining is too! We've rounded up the best patios at…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Here’s Where to Brunch this Weekend
Jun 18, 2018

If you're anything like us, you plan your weekend around brunch. Here is your guide to all of our…

read more >
How To
Here’s How Bub City Celebrates the Best of American BBQ
Jun 11, 2018

Let’s stop for a moment and really think about… BBQ. Burning embers, fragrant smoke, saucey…

read more >
In The Restaurants
A Gift Guide for the Food Lover in Your Life
Jun 1, 2018

Whether a birthday, graduation or any other of the countless holidays, we're here to make selecting…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Where to Eat Lunch
May 11, 2018

For that one hour escape from your office, you want to make sure to make most of your lunch hour.…

read more >
How To
Celebrate May 5th with a Cinco de Derby Julep
May 3, 2018

The Kentucky Derby and Cinco de Mayo fall on the exact same day this year and that means you'll have…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Your Guide to the 26 Best Burgers to Try During National Burger Month
Apr 30, 2018

Burgers deserve a full month of celebrations which is why May has been declared National Burger…

read more >
In The Restaurants
James Beard Eats Week 2018
Apr 17, 2018

James Beard Eats Week is back! From April 27-May 7 show your support of aspiring Chicago culinary…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Kentucky Derby, it’s Mint Julep Time!
Apr 12, 2018

It's that time of the year again to break out the mint juleps and don your Derby hat for the…

read more >
In The Restaurants
New Additions to the Windy City Smokeout 2018 Lineup are Here!
Mar 19, 2018

Announcing three new acts to the Windy City Smokeout music lineup! Midland returns, performing on…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Milkshake Madness: A Tournament of Toppings
Mar 17, 2018

In the grand tournament of milkshake toppings, who are the last sweets standing? We rounded up all…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Kid-Friendly Dining Options and Activities
Mar 15, 2018

You've been to the zoo, the beach, the pool... the kids are starting to get stir crazy. We've got…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Get a Slice for Pi Day
Mar 13, 2018

We all love a good pun, especially when it has to do with food! Mathematicians and foodies rejoice…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Celebrating Diane Corcoran of Bub City
Mar 7, 2018

In honor of International Women's Day on March 8, we celebrate Diane Corcoran, Beverage Director…

read more >
In The Restaurants
St Paddy’s Day 2018
Mar 1, 2018

St. Patrick's Day calls for corned beef, cabbage and all of the beer! Lucky for you, our restaurants…

read more >
In The Restaurants
This One’s For Our Indecisive Diners
Feb 26, 2018

For all of you indecisive order-ers out there - the "I want to order one of everything on the menu"…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Lettuce in Love: Weddings with Lettuce Parties
Feb 13, 2018

It's almost Valentine's Day and love is in the air. Believe it or not it's a tale as old as time (or…

read more >
In The Restaurants
It’s Tequila Time! National Margarita Day is February 22
Feb 12, 2018

As if you needed an excuse to drink margaritas, here's one more: National Margarita Day…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Where to go on Valentine’s Day 2018
Feb 4, 2018

Have you made your Valentine's Day plans yet? It's right around the corner and there's lots of…

read more >
In The Restaurants
The Big Game 2018: Where to Watch and What to Carry-out
Jan 25, 2018

Need a place to watch the big game on Sunday, February 4, 2018? The below restaurants are a great…

read more >
How To
Recipe: Bub City Trucker Snacks
Jan 22, 2018

Is there a more beautiful pairing than football and Bub City's Trucker Snacks? We think not. For…

read more >
How To
Already Fell Off the Healthy New Year’s Resolution Wagon? Let’s Eat.
Jan 12, 2018

"New Year, Same Me" more your speed? Well, we're right there with you. Celebrate one of our favorite…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Where to Eat: Martin Luther King Day 2018
Jan 6, 2018

A long weekend calls for long brunches filled with sweet and savory treats. And don't forget about…

read more >
How To
All Hail the Bloody Mary
Jan 1, 2018

The classic hair of the dog brunch cocktail is getting a facelift. From fresh seafood garnishes’…

read more >
How To
Gift Guide: Beyond a Bottle of Wine
Dec 15, 2017

Your mother told you this a million times and it still holds true today - never go to a party…

read more >
How To
The Perfect Party Appetizers
Dec 12, 2017

A well-crafted appetizer is the perfect way to make sure your guests won't go hungry so you can…

read more >
How To
12 Days of Holiday Cookies
Dec 4, 2017

‘Twas the first day of the holiday season, one of cheer and treats The best month to warm up by…

read more >
How To
Recipe: Potato Latkes | adapted from Bub City
Nov 27, 2017

Celebrate Hanukkah by making these home-cook-friendly latkes, adapted from Bub City's own recipe.…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Best Spots for Group Dining
Nov 25, 2017

You finally got the whole crew to agree on the same day and time, now you just have to find the…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Late Night & Live Music with Lettuce
Nov 9, 2017

Night owls rejoice - select Lettuce restaurants and nightclubs offer everything from late-night food…

read more >
How To
How to Host Friendsgiving
Nov 1, 2017

Friendsgiving (n): the turkey-centric festive feast held by your chosen family - your friends - to…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Fall Harvest’s Best Dishes
Oct 30, 2017

The bounty of fall harvest comes at a time in the year when we are craving the comfort of cool…

read more >
How To
Recipe: Bub City Deep-Fried Turkey Legs
Oct 7, 2017

Take a Southern approach this Thanksgiving with Bub City's recipe for deep-fried turkey legs, which…

read more >
How To
Recipe: Bub City Whole Smoked Turkey
Oct 7, 2017

This Thanksgiving, Bub City is spilling the secrets to its perfectly smoked bird. Not into cooking?…

read more >

Recent Posts

In The Restaurants
Because Mac & Cheese Deserves Its Own Holiday
Jul 14, 2018

In celebration of National Mac & Cheese day on July 14, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Listen Up: The 2018 Curated Windy City Smokeout Playlist Is Here
Jul 11, 2018

This year's Windy City Smokeout music lineup sees up-and-comers, seasoned stars and downright…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Where to Celebrate Bastille Day
Jul 10, 2018

Vive la France! Come celebrate Bastille Day, the French National Day and anniversary of the Storming…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Sip on RPM Italian’s Tableside Gin & Tonics
Jul 9, 2018

There are new Gin & Tonics in town at RPM Italian in Washington, D.C. and RPM Steak in Chicago,…

read more >
How To
Sip on Big Bowl’s Blackberry-Rosemary Sangria
Jul 9, 2018

Entertaining your crew at home? Try making Big Bowl's Blackberry, Rosemary Sangria recipe for…

read more >
In The Restaurants
The 2018 Windy City Smokeout Menu Lineup
Jul 7, 2018

Listen closely... Is that a guitar riff you hear or is it your stomach growlin'? Either way, we've…

read more >
How To
How To Win (2X, 3X, 4X even 5X Points) All Summer Long
Jul 5, 2018

Everyone we know loves summer and everyone we know also loves to win. So what if we told you that…

read more >
In The Restaurants
All The Reasons Why We Love Fried Chicken
Jul 4, 2018

Fact: there's never a bad time for fried chicken. Grab it on your way to the beach, order it up for…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Now Serving: Naoki’s Fried Chicken
Jul 4, 2018

Come check out Naoki's famous Fried Chicken which pairs beautifully with crisp and refreshing…

read more >
How To
Perfect Pair: Champagne & Fried Chicken
Jul 3, 2018

Fried chicken and Champagne? Really? Yep, you read that right. Kevin Bratt, Wine Director of Joe's…

read more >
In The Restaurants
4th of July 2018
Jul 3, 2018

It's that time of year to don your red, white and blue, fire up the grill and, of course, celebrate…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Your Summer Ice Cream Checklist
Jul 2, 2018

I SCREAM, YOU SCREAM...we all know the drill so let's get to the good stuff. July is National Ice…

read more >
Lettuce Consulting Group

Grow Your Business

Learn More
Career Opportunities

Join Our Team

Search Jobs
Latest Articles

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Sign Up Now

Lettuce on Instagram

Checkout our feed @lettuceentertainyou!