BBQ Review

Russell's Ribs (closed)

214 Route 12

Groton, CT 06340

(860) 445-8849


category: Connecticut BBQ, Groton BBQ





This large, 1-room, full-service restaurant just a mile off I-95 looks like a converted Pizza Hut taken over by a permanent Cowboys and Indians theme party. There are western photos and movie posters on the walls and integrated into the tables, toy horses, straw cowboy hats and saddles everywhere. It's the kind of cheesy atmosphere that makes you wonder if the food is any good. There's a nice assortment of beer and wine, though.


The menu is unusual in that it's primarily barbecue, with burgers, wings and fried fish, but there's no brisket or pulled pork. Instead, there's sliced beef and sliced pork. There are pork babyback ribs and spareribs, plus rib tips. The sign outside announces all-you-can-eat specials Monday through Thursday: babyback ribs Monday ($22), beef ribs Tuesday ($16), pork ribs Wednesday ($16) and chicken Thursday ($12). Since I was planning on trying 3 places in one day, I opted for a pork rib and sliced pork combo, with collard greens and cole slaw.


The ribs were fairly large, somewhat smoky, somewhat pink, and somewhat tender, with a somewhat good flavor. The sauce was a generic brown tangy variety. These were fairly competent, real barbecued ribs, with no real flaws, but no real pizzazz either. The sliced pork looked a lot like sliced turkey, very thin and very white, slightly moist but not pulled pork moist. Collard greens were good, though finely chopped and meatless. Cole slaw was good, a nice mix of tangy and creamy. Cornbread was fresh and fluffy, with a good flavor and moist, coarse texture.


Service was friendly, though getting the check was a chore.


The bottom line: This is a better-than-expected place with acceptable if not memorable barbecue. The all-you-can-eat specials, available all day, offer a nice value. While I wouldn't rush back here, it's decent and convenient.


Russell's Ribs on Urbanspoon


Start the hoedown.


Quite a collection of western memorabilia.

click to view larger image

Note the sliced pork.


click to view larger image

Ribs were somewhat meaty.




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