ROCHESTER - Cecil Abels III is in and out of the MrSippy BBQ kitchen more than most restaurant owners, making it clear to diners he's as interested in getting their feedback as he is feeding them.
When you walk into the former Benedict's Grill at the foot of Rochester Hill Road the first thing you'll notice is there's no hostess, but arrows that direct you to the cashier where you'll place your order.
You'll also notice a large menu along the wall to your left from which you select your order.
Abels keeps his menu items short and sweet, concentrating on barbecue staples, but you might also want to peruse the menu online so if a line builds behind you, you don't feel hurried.
We had no such line, and the cashier was very helpful explaining the order options, making it very easy.
Martha and I between us sampled the pulled chicken, smoked mac n cheese, brisket and baked beans and two of their three barbecue sauces.
Here's what we found:
The brisket was the best, with a delicious smoky flavor that bespoke a true barbecue heritage, and a generous portion served on a toasted brioche roll.
The mac n cheese, however, was a bit on the dry side and didn't meet the expectation of smoked as advertised.
The pulled chicken (served without roll due to gluten free concerns) was as moist and tender as you could want, and the MrSippy sauce ladled on knocked it out of the park.
Unfortunately, the baked beans were totally underwhelming, lacking sweetness, spice, heat, or anything that would make it stand out.
Meanwhile, the MrSippy sauce was a huge hit with Martha and I, while the Caroline Mop Sauce was categorized as extra special and "authentic" by Martha, who spent several years in Charleston.