A year and a half ago on at the end of June 2011 my buddy Joe and I tried out The Bull & Boar Smokehouse in Belleville, Ontario and even though they had great appetizers we were very disappointment in their BBQ, in fact of all the reviews I have done up til now, Bull & Boar was my least liked BBQ, you can read that review here.
Then this week I received this email…
Now I am all about giving people and places 2nd chances just like I did for Swiss Chalet a couple of years back after a bad experience they asked me to give them another try and came through with a much nicer eating experience.
So with the opportunity to go to a grand opening ( I have done a few of these like Woody’s in Guelph which was a great time) I was looking forward to going to the opening for dem BONES Hometown SmokeShack & SportsBar
Understand that this is not near by, Belleville is around the 547 km exit on the Hwy 401 and we started off at Exit 419 in Oshawa so it is about an hour and 20 minutes away.
We arrived at dem BONES at around 5:30pm on Thursday night
Walking in the door we were greet by a friendly face that we knew, April who at one time was the General Manager of the Bull & Boar.
April was a doll when we had that not so good dining experience a year and a half ago doing everything she could at the time to make things good, she was a trooper in a situation that she could not help but the effort was there.
Well this time she recognized Joe and I right away, gave us a hug and seemed thrilled that we came. that was an excellent start to our evening.
April offered us a beer right at the door and let us know that it was a sample night and that menu ordering was not going to be happening but that the beautiful servers in black uniforms would be serving samples of some of the items as they are made.
This Grand Opening was only for 4 hours running from 5pm til 9 pm. We found a table in the back in front of what must of been a 12 foot wide projection TV screen on the wall for sports! Wow!
after a few minutes we started getting samples offered to us, first up was some Mac & Cheese and a Chili in about a 4oz plastic cup with a plastic fork.
I enjoyed the taste of the Mac & Cheese and Chili was quite good as well.
Susan really enjoyed her White Wine which was a 2011 Huff Estates Chardonnay ( I had a taste two and it was very good indeed!)
Next item brought to us were some sliders I had the Pulled Pork as did Joe, and Susan the Pulled Chicken with a Carolina Mustard sauce, which she really enjoyed.
The pulled pork was tasty and not sauced too much , more on the saucing in a minute.
April then made her way over to our table and introduced us to one of the owners of dem BONES Terry Pascoe, a very friendly man that welcomed us and in the short chat that we had explained how he was a Belleville boy that had opened a number of restaurants and he was able to give us the impression that he knew what he was doing and backed up the talk with results, as we were all impressed by the service his staff was giving, they were organized and not frazzled by the full house on this grand opening, and were also having fun. A very inviting atmosphere!
Another sample came our way some smoked Salmon on a stick and Grilled Pineapple, (sorry eat that pineapple with out a pic, but it was great!
By this point we had some music happening courtesy of a Bluesy type performer Timothy Campbell who will be playing there every Friday night.
Timothy Campbell was a joy to listen to, and his type of music was the perfect background in the bar, as that music worked well with the combination of BBQ and drinking with friends.
Here are two of his songs that I took vids of…
Back to the table as the great gals serving us brought over some chicken and ribs! as in single bones of side ribs with lots of meat on them and smoked chicken wings that were wonderful!
My friend Susan writes a blog herself and though she mostly writes about her exploits in knitting and book reviews once in a while she will write about a restaurant that she likes. I am sure in the next few days she will have her own post up which I will let you know about but in the mean time you can find her blog here at Kittens with Mittens .
My camera does not take the best pictures in dark room The food looks even better in person trust me!
I would like to introduce you to two of our servers from the evening…
We did not know it at first but Sarah had some very special people that she was also serving at the table next to ours.
Also on their table you can see the deserts that were serves, a moist chocolate cake and a nice carrot cake.
Sarah was also nice enough to offer to take a picture of the three of us.
I had missed the beginning of this but Whitney took the mike and paid tribute to the owners and the great staff for pulling off this night so well and here is the last part of her speech. Very classy!
One more piece of Desert sample…
Apple Crisp was so beautifully spiced, we all agreed it was the best desert we had tonight and that is saying something as the cakes were really good too!
A couple of shots showing the rest of the bar, though not the greatest picture quality.
It was at this point that we said goodnight to our hosts April and Terry, hugs all around and we made the promise that we would be returning on a day when the whole menu is available.
I was so happy that the new management had taken the Bull & Boar and turned it into a joint that I could not only recommend that people but even go as far as saying that it was worth a 3 hour round trip driving to do so!
Would I go back for the BBQ…. Yes!, Would I go back for the great service… Yes! , Would I stay after dinner for the just the entertainment and atmosphere Yes! Yes! Yes!
I have a supplier that is in the area that I visit every month or two, I will make a point of dropping by for lunch when I do, and I may even drive over on a Friday night and try the Prime Rib Special and listen to more of Timothy Campbell on the guitar.
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