FEAST: Join in on a -- successful -- hunt for stand-out sauces and beautiful brisket
3242 Scott, SF. (415) 934-5403, www.cedarhillsf.com
Southpaw BBQ has the most welcoming, festive atmosphere of any of the new 'que joints, with beer brewed right in the dining room, additional beers on draft (like Bruery Mischief, Brother Thelonious, and Deschutes Green Lakes), and a playful cocktail menu offering sazeracs made with Germain-Robin craft brandy and tea syrup.
Sauces: Alabama white sauce, Eastern North Carolina, South Carolina mustard, sweet potato habanero, sweet chili vinegar, Memphis
Stand-outs: Slightly smoky Honey Bunny cocktail (blanco tequila, red pepper, orange and carrot juice, agave) is lively and fun. Platters ($14-19) come with cornbread and two sides. As much as I wanted to love the ribs, brisket and pulled pork, they bordered on being either dry or not as flavorful as other 'que joints. Though not barbecue, fresh, flaky catfish ($14) from Louisiana is my favorite here: comfortingly fried and not at all fishy.
2170 Mission, SF. (415) 934-9300, www.southpawbbqsf.com