Late last week, as I was heading from West Des Moines to Ames, I spotted the B Fabulous BBQ sign along I-35 and thought I would take a slight detour to Slater to check it out. It was dinner time and I was hungry but that turned out to be quite a delicious decision.
Admittedly, stopping at barbecue restaurants is an easy sell for me - though I've become a bit more discerning in my tastes as I get older. Without a doubt, B Fabulous is worth the stop if you are between Des Moines and Ames and looking for a good meal.
It was dark when I rolled into Slater but B Fabulous is located right on the corner of Highway 210 and another well-traveled blacktop that, if you take it about 10 more miles north, will take you directly into the heart of the western side of Ames. I'm told that this restaurant has only been open for a year and is in a building that previously was a doctor's clinic.
As you enter the door, you are greeted by an enormous metal chicken sculpture. It makes a bit more sense when they encourage you to get "cocky" with creating your own sauce "concoc-tions".
As you enter the door, you are greeted by information about their hours and social media.
They have a charitable display that meets you as soon as you walk through the door. They are supporting an organization called "Climb for Haiti". They provide you more information and offer a box for you to contribute, should you so choose.
Once in the restaurant, you find that it is decorated very tastefully. There is a nod to Iowa's agricultural heritage but also a nice industrial feel with the lighting, woodwork, corrugated tin. Per usual, I found some clever and fun signs throughout, too.
There have adequate seating to host a number of guests at the same time but I am sure a lot of their business is carry out and catering.
You order at the large counter, which gives you a view into their spacious kitchen.
I was impressed with the menu. Lots of traditional barbecue options and then plenty of other sandwiches,too. Everything is basically ala-carte, which allows you to mix and match.
Normally, if I try a barbecue restaurant for the first time, I usually "kick the tires" by trying their brisket. However, I opted to try the "Remix Cuban" and a couple of sides - the baked beans and the mac & cheese corn.
The baked beans were delicious and certainly had a sweetness about them that I liked. I grew up eating "corn noodle casserole" at potlucks and family gatherings and B Fabulous' version was quite similar. It's certainly not low calorie but it was creamy, cheesy, and delicious. The Remix Cuban did a lot of things right - delicious ham and pulled pork with pickles, mayo, and some cheese on two pieces of Texas toast.
They pride themselves on offering a lot of different sauces and encourage the mixing of them. I mixed three of the sauces, which included two more traditional barbecue sauces and a mustard based sauce. I did not choose poorly. They have some hotter options, which I chose to avoid!
All in all, this was a great stop. They have done a nice job putting together a beautiful restaurant and the food is no joke. If you are in the central Iowa area and looking for somewhere new, I would encourage an adventure to Slater.
Check out B Fabulous' Facebook page as they appear to have regular specials and updates.
If you have suggestions for other stops to profile in Story County or in of our other 98 counties, please drop me a note and I will add it to a future adventure itinerary.