The goods: Hogzilla’s Inspired Barbeque, a sprawling two-bar smokehouse on Washington Ave, dishes out finger-lickin’ honky-tonk barbecue.
Ambience: Owners Ron Garcia (Burger & Beer Joint) and Raul Rodriguez have created a stylized, redneck-kitsch vibe with hot pink-painted gator skulls, corrugated steel and chandeliers festooned with horns. The main dining room is anchored by a fish tank housing Everglades wildlife and is outfitted with green leather booths and a bar flanked by flat screens. A second bar, separated by a rolling garage door, features high top tables made of butcher block, nineteen more TV’s and space for live bands.
The grub: Southern-style pit food. Portions are large and prices are skewed to the post-frat crowd: starters average $8 and mains (all of which come with a side and a cornbread muffin) can be had for less than $20. An entire suckling pig is available (reserve in advance) for $220 and feeds a table of six.
Small mason jars of popcorn dusted with barbecue dry rub start things off. From there, it’s apps like crisp Everglades frog’s legs, grilled alligator, buffalo, wild boar sausages and house “spam” glazed with molasses then topped with melted cheddar and a sunny side-up egg. Deep-fried mac and cheese croquettes accompany heaping platters of beef, baby back or spare ribs and 18-hour slow-smoked Texas-style brisket. Sauces like mango barbecue and strawberry balsamic offer a sweet component to the meaty richness.
Desserts include a massive slab of dense pumpkin cheesecake, a tart berry cobbler and a chocolate cupcake topped with a strip of bacon.
Verdict: A saucy rendition of redneck barbecue with a stylized interior and smoky slabs of meat.