I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that I didn’t know about this barbecue joint on Center Street. It’s been in its new location for two years and existed on Wells Avenue before that. Somehow, despite making it my mission to fully explore the Reno-Sparks food scene, I missed it—and truly, I’m the one who was missing out.
Thanks, however, to the culinary expertise of our publisher, Brother’s Barbecue flashed on my radar, and I did not hesitate in checking it out.
Located in Midtown in a bright orange renovated home with the logo painted across the front (quite truly, how did I miss it?), the door warns against the inevitable selling out of goods, which can be purchased in combination plates, simple sandwiches, or by the pound.
Once you step in, it’s a typical counter-serve experience, however food takes approximately three to five minutes to make it from the kitchen to your mouth, which is impressive for any establishment without a drive-thru. There is a small seating area inside, and plenty of people take it to go.
On my first visit, I decided to go with the basics. I ordered up an Applewood Pulled Pork Sandwich. I went for the small, which I’ll warn is the size of any normal-sized barbecue sandwich I’ve ever ordered, and a couple of sides—corn and mac and cheese.
The sandwich exudes the flavors of smoked apple in every bite and is topped with pickles and chopped onion, both of which add a satisfying crunch to the meal. I topped mine with extra barbecue sauce (just ask for some on the side) and even tasted the habañero variety of BBQ sauce (but I warn, it’s got some heat).
The sandwich was impressive–especially at $5–and the large is truly made for a big appetite. Sandwiches are also served with a side of Fritos. The corn wasn’t as impressive in my opinion. It was pretty straightforward, although very peppery (in a good way). The mac and cheese, however, tasted like a homemade variety we all grew up on. And no, I’m not talking about anything that came in a blue box. This stuff is real, and it’s delicious.
A case in the corner offers canned sodas, bottled drinks and other goods. Utensils are available upon request, which makes it a great lunch spot in the middle of a workday. So often in counter-serve restaurants I feel like just another person passing through, but the staff here did a good job of elevating that experience. Needless to say, I’ll be back to sample some of the menu’s other items, and I might even hit them up for catering when we can gather again.
In person: 618 S. Center Street, Reno, NV 89501
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
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Nora Heston Tarte is a long-time Reno resident living on the southside of town. In addition to food, her hobbies include wine, hiking, yoga and travel. She is also the managing editor of a regional, lifestyle publication and freelances for other publications most frequently in the travel space. Nora received her bachelor’s in Journalism from California State University, Sacramento before graduating from University of Nebraska, Lincoln with a master’s in Professional Journalism. You can follow her travel adventures, and local exploits, on her Instagram account @wanderlust_n_wine.