The Silvio Brothers Know Meat
In a BBQ town like Kansas City, it takes a lot to stand out. So when the Silvio brothers, Nick and Sam decided to expand their meat kingdom from the Brazilian stylings of Em Chamas Brazilian Grill to a BBQ joint, they knew they had to take a different tactic. After buying existing BBQ restaurant Hawg Jaw Fritz in Riverside, they decided to make it their own. They have since rebranded the business as Hawg Jaw Que and Brew and just recently relocated from Riverside to North Kansas City.
In the new location at 900 Swift Street, they are in the nexus of craft beer: next door to Big Rip Brewing Company and down the street from Cinder Block and Calibration Brewing, so their new name makes a lot of sense. So does their beer list which includes 27 different craft beers, many local and regional and eight craft sodas and root beers. So sip on a KC Bier Company Dunkel or a Lost Trail root beer; either way, you’ll have the perfect beverage for cherry wood smoked barbecue.
The menu also deviates from the Kansas City norms. Sure, the usual suspects are all there: brisket, smoked turkey, sausage, ham, burnt ends and pulled pork but the way that they use them is more creative. I tried the Hawg Trough Sampler ($17.99) and tasted a little of each of those, plus a few of their perfectly seasoned ribs. Everything was cooked to perfection but the burnt ends and ribs stood out. The meat is tender and slides off the bones. The burnt ends were meaty and satisfyingly crispy inside, tender on the inside. With a side of house made beans, it was a more than filling entry into Hawg Jaw’s fare.
For something more adventurous, I chose the Irish Hawg. This take on a classic reuben ($9.99) is a hefty sandwich piled high with smoked corned beef, smoked sausage, swiss cheese and sauerkraut, topped with thousand island dressing and was almost too much for one meal. It’s the first time that I’ve seen a reuben on a BBQ menu but with the subtle smoke flavors, it makes complete sense. Add a side of smoked macaroni and cheese or buffalo cole slaw and it would challenge even the largest appetite.
I also enjoyed the Spud Deluxe ($7.49). The stuffed baked potato featured a fluffy potato filled with pulled pork, chipotle sour cream, cheese, green onions and red peppers. I wouldn’t call it light by any means but it was something different than the expect meat on bread combos that are so ubiquitous.
The restaurant offers a laid back vibe that welcomes lounging. And with appetizers like BBQ brisket or pulled pork nachos, smoked wings or loaded fries, Hawg Jaw is bound to become a destination for happy hour seekers or those trying to delay the effects of too much craft beer from the surrounding purveyors. The Silvios welcome them with open arms.