Welcome to Best Bites, a series where we celebrate not a whole restaurant or menu, but one specific and amazing dish. These bites have something to say and we are listening. Keep reading for dishes that are seriously worth the trek across metro Phoenix to find. Dig in!
Eric's Family BBQ
does a lot of things right. Texas-style barbecue falls off the bone. Rich turkey injected with sweet tea makes for an extra juicy bite. Banana pudding filled with Nilla Wafers and soft cream is the perfect ending to a meal.
At this Avondale restaurant, red checkered tablecloths set the tone. Classic R&B blasting over the speakers makes the whole place a party. Basically, we're fans.
Find Eric's Family Barbecue in Avondale.
But there's one sleeper hit on the menu that I only discovered after another item was sold out. Eric's serves all the classic barbecue sides, including beans, coleslaw, and mac and cheese. But on a recent visit, the mac and cheese was all gone. Wanting something creamy to smooth out the tangy barbecue sauce, I opted instead for the elote.
The bright yellow sweet corn was served in a cup, esquites style, topped with crumbled cotija cheese and bright orange paprika. It looked like your classic Mexican street food treat.
Elote and frijoles are sides available at Eric's Family BBQ.
But this sweet corn wasn't swimming in the usual buttery mix of mayonaise and lime juice, rather, it was encased in a cheesy, creamy sauce, as if the mac and cheese and esquite had a glorious, cheesy baby.
With a bounty of barbecued meats on the table, it was this corn that kept calling us back. The Styrofoam cup was empty before we knew it.
The interior of the restaurant celebrates the food.
Eric's Famy BBQ provides a lot of reasons to drive out to the West Valley. But when you make the trip in search of barbecue, don't sleep on this sweet, cheesy creation.
Eric's Family BBQ
12345 W Indian School Rd, Avondale