BBQ Thursday- Old Clinton BBQ

Old Clinton’s BBQ

Let me preface this edition of bbq Thursday by telling you how I wound up at Old Clinton bbq.

I spent much of Tuesday on the road. I talked to my friend corbin and told him I would be going through Milledgeville around noon and I wanted to try a new bbq joint. My wife had my gps, so I searched for bbq on my smart phone to see what results came up. Several new joints popped up, but being only somewhat familiar with Milledgeville proper, I had a difficult time finding my way to a few of these. So, back to Corbin. I asked him to help me out, but he fell asleep on his job and forgot to get back with me. So after spending a brief amount of time circling Milledgeville looking for a new bbq place, I decided to just stop in at Old Clinton.

Now, I have eaten at Old Clinton’s before, at the Gray location, but it has been 7-8 years since my last visit. I had never been to the one in Milledgeville, and though it’s not the original joint, I decided to stop in.

I was there before the lunch rush, so the parking lot was fairly empty. This was my view when I stepped out of the truck:

As you can see, it’s got a nice appearance on the outside. Not your typical dive joint where you can find hidden treasures, more of a nice place located directly off of 441.

I entered and was greeted  by a friendly waitress who promptly took my order. I went with the usual- a bbq sandwich, stew and slaw. Within a couple of minutes I had my plate. $7 for the plate and a tea. I didn’t mind that one bit.

Adequate portion size, so I was pleased. I asked the Lord to bless this hopefully delicious meal and prepared to dig in.

I had a sip of the sweet tea first, and was well pleased. Not too sweet, but sweet enough. I drank two glasses. I also noticed that there was only one sauce. I tried a bit of it on my finger- it was a vinegar based mild-medium sauce. Not bad, nothing special, so I decided to try the bbq without it.

One bite in and I instantly knew I had made the right decision. That first bite was something special. I don’t know exactly what I was expecting, but what I received was simply delightful. The meat was tender and not fatty. You could tell that it had been cooked slow, probably overnight in a pit. They had a touch of their sauce on it that accented the meat perfectly. I try not to hand  out too many over-the-top compliments when it comes to my bbq, because it takes a special place to match what I set the bar by- Fresh Air. But they had done it. On my personal point scale, they get a 5 out of 5.

There was plenty of meat on the sandwich. Just enough so that some falls out when you’re eating it and you’ve got a little dessert at the end. It was truly the first bbq I’ve tasted in several months that compares to Fresh Air. I had to restrain myself from eating the entire sandwich first (I’m the kind of eater who likes to take a bite of everything, not eat one portion, move on to another, then another.)

Still amazed by the bbq, I jumped into the stew. Maybe I was too high on the bbq still, but the stew wasn’t in the same league. The second bite was better than the first, and I continued to enjoy it. It was a touch soupy, but I can’t find anything wrong with the product. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Just not as much as the ‘cue. I gave the stew a 4 out of 5, which is still a pretty strong rating.

The slaw was the only part of the meal that was mediocre. I wasn’t crazy about it. First, it was a smaller portion that I would have liked, but I can live with that. It was finely chopped into little chunks. Not a great flavor, but it wasn’t the worst I have had recently. To add perspective, I ate the entire portion, but it only received a 3 out of 5 rating. It was a little dry and just wasn’t on the same level as the barbecue.

I tried to eat slowly so that I could relish the entire meal and give the sandwich the respect it deserved. It was really that good to me. I’ve had bbq a dozen times the past month, and this was the best I had tasted. I washed it down with my second glass of sweet tea.

Bottom line is this- if you are passing through Milledgeville and want a very good sandwich, don’t bother searching. Go to Old Clinton. I promise you won’t be disappointed. It’s located on 441 between Little River and downtown. Can’t miss it. We spend some time at my in-laws lake house on Lake Sinclair during the spring and summer, and I guarantee you that I will be stopping back soon. Again, I try to not go over the top with my praise unless it’s Scott’s or Fresh Air, but this was a special sandwich.

Overall, this was one of my better dining experiences. I love eating bbq by myself so I can enjoy the meal and watch my surroundings. This joint provided just what I was looking for. I am glad that corbin let me down and that my wife had the gps, or I probably would have chosen a different place. But when I take the guys to the lake in a few months, you can find us at Old Clinton. Stop by soon, then tell me thanks.


p.s. If you have a place that we should try, let us know and we’ll stop by and do a review.

p.p.s. Here’s the view from the dock of my in-laws place. I had a few moments and decided to stop by. Lake Sinclair is without a doubt one of Georgia’s gems.

11 Responses to “BBQ Thursday- Old Clinton BBQ”

  1. 1 Robert January 6, 2011 at 8:39 am

    Old Clinton is the best BBQ in the state. Nothing compares. During my time in Athens I naturally gravitated toward Jot Em Down, which I thought was superior to all other Q’s. Then I had Old Clinton. I live in Macon now and hit up Old Clinton every time I head to Athens or Madison, where my family is from. TRY THE RIBS! They will blow your mind.

  2. 2 Alley Oop January 6, 2011 at 9:07 am

    I love Old Clinton, too, but you must also try Pig-In-A-Pit BBQ in downtown Milledgeville on Hancock Street or its newer store in Macon located right across the street from the Bass Pro Shop on Bass Road near I-75. Some of the best pulled pork and sauce I’ve ever had.

  3. 4 Corbindawg January 6, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Glad I could help.

  4. 5 Matt January 6, 2011 at 9:32 am

    Next time you come to Milledgeville try Pig in a Pit. Its located downtown on Hancock Street. It’s right down from the Brick, which is typically the one downtown Milledgeville eatery people seem to be familiar with that aren’t from town. Like Old Clinton, they also have a second location. They are located off Bass Road in Macon, which I’m sure you’re probably already familiar with. Glad to see the BBQ reviews up again.

  5. 6 Pig Picker in Cumming January 6, 2011 at 9:52 am

    Great job on the review Ucheedawg. Now you’ve got me trying to figure out when I can plan a trip by the Old Clinton spot on Gray Highway near Gray. That ought to be just about close enough to you guys that you do it for lunch one day!

  6. 7 AlaskaDawg January 6, 2011 at 10:30 am

    Being from Macon and attending Jones County High in Gray, I can safely say that I have had the pleasure of being raised on the likes of Old Clinton BBQ, Satterfield’s, Fincher’s, Fresh Air (N. Macon location), Pig in a Pit, and other fine Middle Georgia institutions. But a true gem of a spot is owned and operated by the Castlebury family in Forsyth out next to the Ga. Public Safety Training Center (off I-75)- LIl Piggy BBQ. They have my personal favorite of all Georgia’s “Hot” BBQ sauces. This sauce goes great on everything they have, especially their ribs which the to-go box can barely contain. Their smoked pork chop plate might be a good 1.5 inches in thickness and is best served earlier in the day. The pulled pork plate is traditionally served with white bread, but ask for extra bread- no way you can eat all of the meat with just two pieces. Side items are great as expected. but make sure you try the Brunswick Stew (and don’t forget the Lays potato chips for dipping) If you are ever in the area or just want to make a road trip, Lil Piggy is about an hour from everywhere and you will not leave hungry or unimpressed.

  7. 8 DC Dawg January 6, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    If you are ever in the Dublin/East Dublin area, check out Rick’s BBQ in East Dublin – the best in GA for my money, but I think folks are always partial to the BBQ they grew up with.

  8. 9 Melanie Dixon January 8, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Give me a shout when in Milledgeville or Macon and I can share some old stories about John C. I’m you may have some stories to share with me too..

  9. 10 norman jones September 14, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    I’ve mentioned this place to you once before, but it’s worth bringing it up again. I’ve eaten Q in five states and Farm Boys in Chapin S C is the best I’ve had. They have vineger and mustard base (i’m not much on mustard) but the vinegar is to die for, also have fried chicken and several sides. 20 miles north of Columbia 1/2 mi off I-26.

  1. 1 Old Clinton Bar-B-Q – The Grit Tree – Review « Kevin's BBQ Joints Blog Trackback on January 19, 2011 at 2:53 pm

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