Couch’s Barbecue - “Their Southern Went Flat”

Sunday, October 28, 2012 - by Willie Mae
Couch's Barbecue is at 8307 Old Lee Highway in Ooltewah
Couch's Barbecue is at 8307 Old Lee Highway in Ooltewah

 Even though I am not fond of a lot of fried foods or having good old timey Southern cooking each day, when I want a good Southern-based meal I want it to be re-e-a-a-l Southern!

On the occasion that I let myself have fried okra, I want it to be hand breaded (and fried in a cast iron skillet if possible). When I want barbecue, I want it so moist and tender it falls off the bone.

With all the good food we have in Chattanooga and small business owners creating unique touches, I also like a choice of homemade sauces for my barbecue.

And can’t you just see a good ol’ buttermilk corn muffin on the side?

When I went into Couch’s Barbecue, I expected a Southern BBQ meal. I had several friends tell me how much they loved this place and it had been around for years! I already had in mind that I was going to love it!

The place was all decorated in Coke paraphernalia and it gave you a cozy feeling. It was busy and it seemed this was a pretty popular place. A cute little waitress wearing a kerchief on her head came to take my order.

I was delighted to try this charming little place that was family owned. I even snickered at the pig with wings that appeared to be flying on the pull string of a ceiling fan.

I read over the menu and ordered a BBQ pork plate that came with three sides and a roll for 8.99. I chose coleslaw, fried okra and mashed potatoes.

There was a menu-like thing on the table that had trivia questions of all sorts for patrons to have fun with while they waited. It also told of their history, being owned by Will and Agnes Couch in 1946, along with local advertisements.

I liked everything about this place but when the food arrived… well, this one was of those ‘to each his own’ moments. From my beginning description of how I anticipated a good ol’ Southern BBQ dinner to taste – I was a bit disappointed.

The pork was not pulled – it was shaved and a little dry. There was only one barbecue sauce in a bottle on the table along with a small bottle of an off-brand, store-bought hot sauce.

The slaw was grated very fine and was runny with a strong onion-y taste. The okra looked like it came from a package and or what you would get on one of those food bars and a chain restaurant. The potatoes were ‘just okay’ with a little saw mill gravy on top and I was brought some rolls that looked like they also came from a package and thrown on the griddle made to be flat with a bit of shimmer of some type of butter or grease on top.

I hate to say that I was not impressed with the food because I really did like the place. So I am just going to say that it was not the BBQ meal I expect when I am hankering for good ol’ barbecue of the South.

To me, the rolls were not the only thing flat about this meal. Sorry.

 

Menu items
Menu items

212 Market Restaurant Wins 18th Wine Spectator Award Of Excellence, Hosts Upcoming Wine Dinner

Wine Spectator  magazine has recognized 212 Market Restaurant’s exceptional wine list with its Award of Excellence for the 18 th  year in a row. According to  Wine Spectator,  “The Award of Excellence recognizes restaurants whose wine lists feature a well-chosen assortment of quality producers along with a thematic match to the menu in both price and style. ... (click for more)

Zaxby's To Hold Hero Appreciation Day At Chattanooga Area Locations On Saturday

Zaxby’s locations in Chattanooga and the surrounding areas are coming together to give back to local heroes by hosting a special appreciation day on  Saturday .   Any police officer, EMT, firefighter and active military guest that presents a proper ID and/or comes dressed in their uniform will receive one free meal and drink from the full Zaxby’s menu.  ... (click for more)

Hixson Man Charged With Sending Threatening Emails To General Sessions Court Judge

A 30-year-old Hixson man has been charged with making threats to kill General Sessions Court Judge Lila Statom after police said they found evidence to tie him to recent threats against the judge. David Lee Graham, of 1730 Colorado St., is charged with retaliation against a judge. His bond was raised to $100,000. Detective Ric Whaley said he had been conducting an investigation ... (click for more)

Rescuers Carry Injured 15-Year-Old Boy Out Of Pocket Wilderness

First responders spent Sunday afternoon rescuing an injured 15-year-old boy at the Pocket Wilderness at the foot of Mowbray Mountain. At 1:20 p.m. , a 911 call was made reporting a teenager had injured his ankle from cliff jumping at the "Blue Hole " at the Pocket Wilderness. Tennessee State Parks and the Mowbray Volunteer Fire Department responded to the scene and immediately ... (click for more)

Make America Good Again

“No people can be great, who have ceased to be virtuous.”   Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784) Last week I witnessed first hand the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. As I observed the happenings within the Quicken Arena, the one theme that continued to pop up again and again, was  Make America Great Again .  Of course, that being ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Jerika’s Last Dance

There is a horrifying disease called spinal muscular atrophy type 2 that you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. What happens is the nerve cells in a person’s brain stem and spinal cord slowly die and, without the ability to voluntarily control your muscles, your body withers away in one of the most painful ways you can imagine. Jerika Bolen, age 14, can’t stand it any longer, nor ... (click for more)