Today my brother helped me exchange mattresses between my place and my parents' house. The advantages of having a younger brother with a truck! After we finished we were trying to decide what to do for lunch. He wanted to go by Whole Foods so he could get something quick and be on his way. (Apparently he has other things to do with his life than be my servant all day.) But our mom was at home - this is her spring break - and she really liked the idea of us getting some barbecue and bringing her something back. So we went to Robins.
I convinced my brother that we should start with an order of the tri-tip and cheddar potato skins. I have always enjoyed these in the past but today they were below average. The tri-tip wasn't bad, although they were much smaller pieces than I have had before. But there was a lot of the potato left in the skins, and it wasn't fully cooked. It destroyed the flavor of the skins. For my last couple bites I added some sour cream and some of their "spicy" barbecue sauce. (Which isn't spicy but is still tasty.)
I almost always get the "Carolina Chopped Pork Sandwich" at Robins, and it's usually quite good. But I've already posted pictures of that on the blog so I figured I would try something new. I opted for the "Smoked Ham Sandwich." I once tried a plate of ham at Robins and it was less than memorable (I'm being polite; I like Robin's so I won't go into detail about that particular meal,) so my expectations for this sandwich were low.
The sandwich was awesome. The ham had very little fat on it and was piled high on a roll, blackened around the edges with the perfect amount of saltiness. This was one of the best smoked ham sandwiches I have ever had in California. I had asked for a side of their Carolina mustard sauce, with the idea of slathering it generously on the sandwich if the meat wasn't good. I did not need to use more than a couple drops. I will definitely try this sandwich again.
My brother got something called the "Big Pig Jig" - smoked ham, chopped pork, and rib tips. It reminded me of this interaction from The Simpsons:
Homer: Are you saying you're never going to eat any animal again? What about bacon?
Homer: Pork chops?
Lisa: Dad! All those come from the same animal!
Homer: Hee, Hee. Yeah, right, Lisa. A wonderful, magical animal.
His ham was just as good as mine, although it was covered in their original sauce, which is tasty but much too sweet for any kind of pork. His chopped pork had a nice smoke ring to it and was tasty, although the piece he shared with me had a lot of fat on it that had to be pulled away. I did not try the rib tips.
We got my mom a chopped salad with tri-tip. It looked very good, although I was preoccupied and forgot to take a picture (or, I guess, ask how she liked it.) This was definitely one of the better trips to Robins I have had. Other than the potato skins (and the meat on the skins was still good, it was just the potatoes that were poorly cooked) everything we had was good.