There are pork barbecues. And there’s Special BBQ. When a brand name of a food company focuses on and adopts the name of one of its products, pork barbeque, that BBQ must be good. So when you have Ineng’s Special BBQ, you’d expect the BBQ to be real good.
First, the downside. If that singular product stinks, er, fails to impress the customers’ taste buds, then the entire restaurant is seriously prejudiced. Let’s focus on the BBQ, because if we include products like the fresh lumpia, we would seriously reconsider our overall opinion below. Anyway, we know a few individuals who wouldn’t go near Ineng’s because they’re home-grilled pork BBQ, they claim, tastes better.
I have no reason to doubt their cooking prowess, of course (my friends, I mean). I just don’t necessarily agree with them that the pork barbeque of Ineng’s Special BBQ is not special.
Let’s start with the non-essential — the BBQ stick. This is the part that we don’t eat, which is precisely the point. The sticks of some BBQs are not smooth and rounded, probably not machine-made, which is why there’s usually a thread-like grain of the bamboo that gets into the bite.
Then there’s the [un]healthy dose of fat slices at the bottom of the BBQ stick. No matter what health proponents might say, a BBQ is not a real BBQ. An all-meat BBQ is nothing but a second-rate, trying-hard copycat, as the famous Filipino movie line goes.
Now, the meat. It’s soft and tender, grilled just right. We tend to overcook our backyard BBQ to ensure that the middle of the meat gets cooked. This results to black, parched portions that taste bitter. Not with meat-packed stick of Ineng’s Special BBQ. It’s something that you’d gladly wait for 15 minutes, the maximum service time Ineng requests for us to wait.
We’re still wondering as to the marinate mixture Ineng’s use for its pork BBQ. A trade secret. How long the meat is marinated is equally a mystery. These matters, together with the great flavor of Ineng’s BBQ, makes it special.