Ask anybody in Kansas City where the best barbecue is and you’ll probably get one of three answers: Jack Stack, Oklahoma Joe’s, or Arthur Bryant’s BBQ. These guys are the Big Three of barbecue in the town. My sister’s favorite is Jack Stack and we’ve had that in the past when visiting her. Her neighbor recommended Oklahoma Joe’s to us, and when we found out it was in a gas station, well, we had to check it out.
One thing to note: Oklahoma Joe’s is named after the Oklahoma-brand smoker originally used at the place, and it doesn’t mean the food here is ‘Oklahoma’ style. It’s ‘Kansas City’ style … whatever that means.
We arrived shortly after it opened and got in line. The place has quite the lunch rush and signs direct traffic that typically ends up stretching outside. This is a busy place, but the kitchen keeps up to the rush. Lisa ordered the pulled pork. I ordered the Z-Man sandwich, a bunch of brisket topped with cheese, pickles, and two onion rings.
The food was amazing. Lisa’s pulled pork was fantastic and flavorful. My sandwich was heavenly — especially after adding a bit of their spicy barbecue sauce to the flavor party. The beans were awesome too. Watching the crowd was maybe the most fun of all — this place is loved by people. We can’t wait to return, but Arthur Bryant’s is next on our list — we’ll dine there next time we’re in town.