1119 N. Boulevard, 355-6055; 8205 W. Broad St., 346-4227
Second Place: Alamo BBQ
Third Place: Q Barbeque
Barbecue is personal thing, tastewise, and the country’s regional variations can spark arguments that can last a lifetime. Buz and Ned’s Real Barbecue is the closest thing we have to Kansas City-style in the city — a little sweet, always tender and with a deep smokiness that lingers. Owner Buz Grossberg slayed the Flay (Bobby Flay, that is) more than eight years ago, but that doesn’t stop the show that celebrated his win from playing on a loop while you wait for your order. The sides aren’t so shabby either — the never-slimy fried okra, killer mac ’n’ cheese and the best potato salad in Richmond. Alamo BBQ takes barbecue lovers south where the smoked meats’ flavor is mean and lean, and Destination America’s “Barbecue Pitmaster” judge Tuffy “the Professor” Stone’s Q Barbeque provides pork with a slow, calculated smoke that can be customized with clutch of different sauces.