Is It Any Good?

Calfornia style BBQ in South Pasadena.

Gus's Barbecue on Urbanspoon
Gus's Barbecue on Foodio54

Part of the charm of going down into South Pasadena is seeing a nice, warm community that’s got a lot of nice shopping and a lot nice places to eat.

But heck, you didn’t come to South Pas to see South Pas, you came for the Barbecue. Since 1946, Gus’s Barbecue has been dishing it out, California style.

Now what does that mean?  Speaking as someone descended from a long line of Texans, I can say we are very particular about our Barbecue. We find the stuff from Kansas City and the Carolinas amusing little distractions. Not bad, but nothing we’re swearing off the mother brand for.

California’s no different. It’s not quite as sweet as Carolinian or Kansas City Barbecue, but lacks the kick that Texas Barbecue can deliver. Then again, the real star of the show is the meat. How one prepares it truly determines the quality of the Barbecue. Gus’s has the advantage of having its own smoker, so everything comes out beautifully.

Sitting down in Gus’s, you get the feeling of being in a first class, white table cloth joint. Yet, there’s still a sense of fun. The Wait staff is warm and friendly. You’re treated more like a neighbor, coming in to the local joint that you’ve been coming to for years…even if its your first time.


WHAT SHOULD I GET: Anything the heck you want. Seriously. I have yet to try even a tenth of the menu. That being said the Rib and Two Meat Combo, or the Chicken and Two Meat combo will give you the opportunity to get a nice sampling off their faire. Not too big, not too small.  Plus, their sides? I did their very smooth and silky Mac and Cheese and Braised Southern Greens.  But anything you get will be top notch.


IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: Desert. Recommended, but is a bit large for one. Heck, it’s a bit large for even for two.

And Sweet Tea…don’t forget the Sweet Tea.  Its a Southern meal, have yourself a Southern drink.


PARKING: Well, Gus’s has it’s own free parking lot, but it fills up incredibly quickly. There seems to be more parking in backing, that they seem to share with another establishment, so it’s not quite clear where you can park and where you can’t. Also because of recent road projects, Street Parking can be tricky as well.


Gus’s Barbecue
808 Fair Oaks Ave.
South Pasadena, CA 91030-2606

Tel: (626) 799-3251

Monday-Thursday: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Friday: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Saturday: 8:30 am – 11:00 pm
Sunday: 8:30 am – 10:00 pm