To help celebrate his 90th birthday, civil rights icon Andy Young called for a Peace Walk in Downtown Atlanta—and the Trailheads jumped in, trading our usual weekly hike for a more important march for Peace and Reconciliation. Joining about a thousand people in Centennial Olympic Park, Trailheads Guy—with ever faithful mascot Fio—Roy, Steve & George, who brought along his pal, Bob Dickinson, listened intently as speeches were made and prayers were offered before the procession began. Trailhead Patrick was hobnobbing in Palm Springs with his golf buddies but promised to say a Hail Mary on behalf of the march. Trailhead Brad lamely proclaimed he had errands to run but was probably working on a big new top secret design project.
Although he’s 90, Ambassador Young still wields that rare gift of eloquence he used so valiantly during the tumultuous civil rights marches of the Sixties, at the United Nations in the 70s, as Mayor of Atlanta in the 80s, and as Atlanta Olympic Chairman of the 90s. While lauding Atlanta as a beacon of hope for all, he reminded us how far we’ve come but how much farther we have to go—and how much our world needs peace right now.
The march left Centennial Olympic Park, wound its way between the Georgia World Congress Center and State Farm Arena, circled the massive Mercedes Benz Dome and entered the Vine City neighborhood on its way to its final destination at the new Rodney Cook Park.
As the crowd took in the impressive water features and elevated walkways of the still unfinished park, the walk ended with the dedication of a new statue commemorating the life and work of Andy Young. Well played, Sir.
On the walk we were joined by a very nice reporter for Georgia Public Radio. She asked about our thoughts on the march and Mr. Young. Apparently they liked Guy’s answer best as his made the news. It was smart and thoughtful. A little out of character but he represented the Trailheads well.
After marching for peace we decided to march for barbecue.
So after saying our goodbyes to Mr Young and all the fine people we shared this wonderful day with we headed for DAS BBQ on Memorial Drive to continue our discussion of peace and reconciliation. Weighty lunch topics to be sure. But important ones for our time. Brad (of course) showed up to join the group.. But sadly he did not bring the always welcome Elvis along. Fio missed him today.
DAS opened this new place last April mid-pandemic. It’s the second location after the popular original on Collier Road. There’s lots of space to stretch out and watch the three huge bbq cookers that were made right here in Georgia from old propane tanks and look like submarines smoking away. They even have charming names. “Smokey.” “Bandit.” And the big boy is “Cledus.” He’s a monster.
There are plenty of dining options. Inside, covered porches and a Sun lovers patio. An added bonus, the entrance to Oakland Cemetery, one of Atlanta’s most intriguing walkabouts, is basically out the back door.
And the food deserved our coveted Four Rib Rating. Brad and George both proclaimed the excellence of the half-rack of short ribs. Meaty, perfectly barked, mahogany colored and full of smoky goodness. If you like fatty ribs these are not for you. They are lean and tasty.
Guy indulged in a butter bathed and smoked turkey sandwich, which revealed the skills of the pit master. They assured us the butter just keeps it moist and won’t take you too far off your diet.
Steve and Bob and enjoyed the generous pulled pork sandwiches, both rated highly, and Roy the iconoclast had the sausage (normally a Steve call) plus a pulled pork sandwich for good measure. He only eats the meat. Leaves the bread. We think it’s a little odd too.
Aside from the regular sauce, there were three powered by espresso, mustard and vinegar and the Trailheads enjoyed comparing the tart notes. Not to be too critical, but the Brunswick stew could have been more Brunswicky according to the always articulate Steve (Has Steve even been to Brunswick we wondered?) and the cole slaw needed more mayo per the majority vote. It has a lot of celery seeds. That we’re sure of. We’re still mining our teeth for those little fellows. The other sides were rated highly but today was about the meats. And we liked them.
We left DAS satiated as you expect—and at peace thanks in no small part to Andrew Jackson Young.
Rating: Four Ribs*
350 Memorial Drive SE
Atlanta, GA 30312
*About Our Barbecue Rating System
Trailheads do not claim to be food experts, epicureans, or sophisticated palettes. We are hungry hikers who attack a selected barbecue venue and ravage our way through whatever smoked fare and fixings they’re dishing.
Our reviews feature what we believe are the highlights of the menu we sampled. So our intent is not to trash talk the saintly folks who tend to smoldering smokers on hot, humid summer days. They are sacrificing themselves in the noble art of smoking meats and feeding the drooling masses. Many are independent entrepreneurs who are the backbone of this humming American economy.
Now that you know our standards, you may wonder why every barbecue place gets a four ribs rating. The answer is easy: we have acclaimed designers in our group, and they think the ribs graphic looks cool.
Who are we to argue? Enjoy.