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Steak Shapiro’s Top 15 BBQ Joints in Atlanta

Okay, so I’m kinda proud of being dubbed the  “Food Guy of Atlanta” and I get asked by folks near and far, what is it Atlanta is truly known for from a dining perspective?  In essence,  what does Atlanta do best?  I have a lot of answers to that question but one of those has to be we have kick-ass BBQ, and it only keeps getting better.  Atlanta doesn’t focus on one particular region or sauce, or focus on brisket over pork over chicken, etc…we dig it all, and we love our BBQ restaurants, in all shapes and sizes and with great stories behind them. Therefore it is a pleasure to give you my top 15 BBQ spots in Atlanta, listed below in alphabetical order. 


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1. City BBQ

City BBQ is brand new to town and I am just crazy about their pulled pork and Texas toast. There is no better deal than their Motherload platter for $75. Why choose a meat when you can try their brisket, pulled pork, turkey, ribs, sausage, sides, and more? It’s truly unbelievable. 

Community BBQ - Ribs
Community BBQ – Ribs

2. Community Q

They do so much well at this classic Decatur spot that’s satisfying folks for years, but the side dishes are where the shit gets real.  Brunswick stew, baked beans, collared are strong but the Mac n’ cheese is unrivaled. If you go there and don’t order it, we can’t be friends.
Das BBQ – Brisket

3. Das BBQ

An Atlanta Eats favorite from the first time we highlighted this father/son team on our show.  The love for Das BBQ just keeps growing and growing.   The smokers “Pancho” and “Lefty” at their original location are cranking out close to the finest sliced brisket on the planet. Add to that their snappy beef sausage and cream corn, and you have the perfect BBQ feast.  Love the outdoor space in the Grant Park location during the warmer months.
Dave Poe's BBQ - Pork Sandwich
Dave Poe’s BBQ – Pork Sandwich

4. Dave Poe’s BBQ

You best drag your happy butt to Marietta to get cozy with the “Redneck Lasagna” consisting of macaroni and cheese topped with Brunswick Stew.  If that don’t shake you up then just go deep with the ribs, either the tender baby back or the insanely strong St. Louis spare ribs.  


5. Fat Matt’s Rib Shack

There are a lot of epic things about Fat Matt’s but it’s the ribs that steal the show. The ribs fall clean off the bone. They’re so tender they’ll make you cry. Live blues most nights too make this place a 10 out of 10.
Foggy Bottom BBQ | Pulled pork with slaw and Brunswick stew

6. Foggy Bottom BBQ

Cajun food has a very special place in my heart. So when I found out that there’s a spot that serves BBQ with a Cajun twist, I knew it was worth making the trip to either the Loganville or Lawrenceville location. I’ve loved everything I’ve had there, but your life will change once you try the Cajun Fried Ribs with spicy ranch.


Fox Bros BBQ | Photo: TOUR Championship
Fox Bros BBQ | Photo: TOUR Championship

7. Fox Bros. BBQ

Okay no BBQ joint or maybe any restaurant in Atlanta has been as celebrated as Fox Bros. during the last 15 years. How did they get so famous and beloved?   Umm, because they’re awesome.  Get cozy with the hickory smoked BBQ wings, insanely fun Frito Pie and ribs that the whole Southeast is talking about. We love visiting them at the Chattahoochee Food works right by our offices.

8. Hattie Marie’s BBQ

We covered this College Park BBQ stop on Atlanta Eats, and what I remember most about that shoot were the delicious ribs and cheddar jalapeño sausage, along with the warmth from the family that runs this place. I felt the love at Hattie Marie’s!

Sweet Beef from Heirloom BBQ
Heirloom BBQ – Sweet Beef Sandwich

9. Heirloom Market BBQ

The hype is real and always has been.  Located next to a gas station on Akers Mill Rd. only adds to the charm as does the husband and wife team that brings Korean flavors with classic southern BBQ to blow your mind with intense flavors.   Hammer down the Korean pork sandwich with a side of Mac n’cheese and simply send me a thank you note later.

10. Old Brick Pitt

Old Brick Pitt has been crushing it in Chamblee since the 70s. I go crazy for their BBQ pork sandwich, and you can’t beat the price. 
Smoked Wings from Pit Boss BBQ.
Pit Boss BBQ – Smoked Wings

11. Pit Boss BBQ

If great BBQ spots need to be dives then indeed we have a Hall of Famer in Hapeville’s Pit Boss BBQ. You won’t find a couple more passionate about their meats or their customers than Wade and Tracy McSwain or a sandwich more crazy tasty than Best Bet Brisket Sandwich.  Make the drive, you can owe me a drink later.  
Sock's Love BBQ - Brisket Sandwich | Photo:
Sock’s Love BBQ – Brisket Sandwich | Photo:

12. Socks Love BBQ

There is a reason that I keep having folks ask me “have you been to Socks Love” in Cumming and that’s because owner Steven Hartsock is as serious as a Braves playoff game about his BBQ and his guests.  A true “local” spot that excels across the board with pulled pork, brisket and sides that dominate like Freddie Freeman with fire-roasted cream corn, “OMG” mac & cheese and Frito-Chili Pie. 
Sweet Auburn BBQ - Ribs | Photo: Facebook/SweetAuburnBBQ
Sweet Auburn BBQ – Ribs | Photo: Facebook/SweetAuburnBBQ

13. Sweet Auburn Barbecue

The pulled pork and the pimento cheese wontons are what I dream about. Owners Howard and  Anita Hsu are making darn good BBQ with a an added bit of Asian flavor like their Southern Seoul sandwich with Korean style steak and sriracha. 

Twin Smoker's Dino Rib Plate
Twin Smokers | Dino Rib Plate

14. Twin Smokers BBQ

Most of these other BBQ joints are the stars of their neighborhood, but Twin Smokers is the star of freakin’ downtown Atlanta! Get your brisket and bourbon on before heading to a Falcons, Hawks, or Atlanta United game, and you’ll know you pregamed like a champion.

Zeigler's - Brisket Sandwich
Zeigler’s – Brisket Sandwich

15. Zeigler’s

I am more than happy to throw on my favorite podcast (Conan, Joe Rogan, Bill Burr) and take the easy drive to Acworth to smash me some Zeigler’s BBQ in particular the legendary ribs and wings.  Bad Bryon’s Butt Rub used on all their meats tastes as delicious as it sounds and for sure leaving the joint without sampling the homemade bread pudding would be kinda criminal.
Editor’s Note: This article was first published February 9, 2021 and last updated June 7, 2024.
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