Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Shed Barbeque and Blues Joint (4/10) - 7501 Highway 57, Ocean Springs, MS 39565

Quick back story behind The Shed BBQ in Ocean Springs, Mississippi:  Brad, a Mississippi native, attended Ole Miss where he had an insatiable craving to dumpster-dive.  He amassed a sizable collection of 'goods', had an epiphany to construct a barbecue restaurant out of  those previously discarded items, partnered with a gentleman by the name of Poppa who created a barbecue sauce, and together, construction was launched on a barbecue and blues joint which they called The Shed.  I watched a special on The Shed's barbecue on Ribs Paradise on the Travel Channel, and knew I'd be making a trip to this establishment in the near future.

In my way towards Louisiana after eating at The Brick Pit, I took a pit stop at The Shed to load up on some ribs and brisket where I could also drink a few beers outside while listening to some live tunes.  On paper, the restaurant is perfect.  My excitement reached a feverish pitch as I pulled into the lot and heard the live music intertwined with the sounds of a large crowd who were also looking to enjoy themselves over a smattering of barbecue.

What I quickly figured out however, was that The Shed would soon disappoint in almost every way imaginable.  The Shed equates to the friend that takes every joke way too far.  Something that was once found enjoyable in smaller doses quickly loses its novelty and becomes more of an annoyance.  Fans of The Shed are called "Shedheads", there are Shed Philosophy stickers peppering the restaurant that might have been funny in 1984 (i.e., if the black box in a plane is indestructable, why don't they make the entire plane out of the black box), and the shirts read "Eat Shed"/"Get Fed At The Shed".  The slogan was in my face no matter where I turned.  Due to the loud live music,  the  waitresses were forced to scream each customer's name while aimlessly wandering by tables in hopes of locating the correct party.  Although the theme of the restaurant is "junk collected by Brad", loud unorganized chaos is a lot more suiting.  For The Shed's (more importantly, my own) sake, I seriously hoped the food was going to be incredible and be the coup de grĂ¢ces of this experience.  At this point in all honesty, I really deep down wanted to hate this place.  I ordered a half slab of ribs, half pound of brisket, and a quarter pound of pork and hoped for the best.

The brisket did not have the consistency I had ever tried as it shredded apart like a slow braised osso bucco.  Next up, pulled pork.  The pork lacked any substantial smoky flavor, and the ribs were completely coated with the same Shed thick barbecue sauce that accompanied all the other meats.  Not only were the dishes the least bit intriguing, but the meat fell way too easily, the sauce they were swimming in tasted like toned down KC Masterpiece, and there was no indication that wood was even a component in the smoking process.  It was a complete letdown across the board (no offense to KC Masterpiece).

If any of the dishes were the least bit appetizing, I would have torn into my food and stayed a lot longer to enjoy some beers and barbecue in front of the blues band.  I instead left in disgust after eating a bite of each to meet some friends in New Orleans.  The Shed is an establishment that could well possibly be a great venue to visit with a solid group of friends so long as the expectations for delicious barbecue are nonexistent.

Shed Barbeque on Urbanspoon


  1. Thank Sweet BBQ Lovin' Jesus that someone else sees that "The Shed" is a total racket.

  2. I have watched in disbelief as they have appeared on television show after television show. I am amazed so many people are so crazy about their food. I think the entire experience, from the screaming waitresses, the heat, the bugs, the plastic silverware, dirty tables, only to be so terribly disappointed with a ridiculously sweet, mediocre at best BBQ meal. I admire the owners for working their tails off and being so active in our community. And dining is most clearly evidenced here as a matter of taste. You like what you like. Good for you, Brad.

  3. And to think I was the only one who did not like this place! But, it's all about advertising.

  4. I agree, The Shed is awful! Nothing to recommend it at all.

  5. Glad to know my husband and I are not the only ones who were grossly disappointed in The Shed's food. Obviously, those who love it never had any real BBQ.


Ratings and Reviews

In order to provide a consistent grading standard across each restaurant/region, I order a barbecue pork sandwich (and other meats/sides if a restaurant/region specializes in another specialty). In addition to comparing the quality of food, I will also take into consideration other intangibles (ambiance, atmosphere, service, authenticity, etc.) in my ratings as I deem appropriate.

Basically, a 10/10 represents an incredible meal, while a 6/10 score indicates a decent dining experience but a substantial number of dishes fell short of great. Lower scores indicate unpleasant experiences which I would most likely not even recommend to my worst enemy (Jonas Singer).

I reserve the right to continuously edit/update previous posts and to change rating scores as I see fit.