Last updated 3/29/2007 at Noon
In the heart of Old Town Temecula is a cozy and bustling place where you can get some good barbecue. But you don’t have to take my word for it; Inland Empire Magazine named Sweet Lumpy’s the “Best Restaurant” in 2006. That’s not all, either! Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger had one of their beef sandwiches during his campaign stop last summer and wrote the owner a letter telling him how much he liked it.
About three years ago, John Syroka, who is a transplant to Temecula from Toledo, OH, opened Sweet Lumpy’s. He uses his brother’s Midwestern barbecue recipes, so John named the restaurant after his brother, whose real name is Jim but was given the nickname of Sweet Lumpy.
Country western music gets you into the barbecue-eatin’ mood and the interior of the restaurant is ‘down home’ with gingham tablecloths and western art. A patio area out front is a great place to chomp your barbecue on a warm afternoon.
Ever shelled and eaten a peanut, then tossed the shell on the floor? Littering the floor in Sweet Lumpy’s is encouraged, and a wheelbarrow full of roasted peanuts is ready for you to dig in, grab some peanuts and get crackin’.
The menu lists starters, sandwiches, full meal barbecue platters, salads and ‘Kid’s Chow.’ For starters try a ‘Whole Ear of Sweet Corn” or “Cheddar Jalapeno Poppers.” Full meal platters can be beef, pork, chicken, ribs or hotlinks. Fresh salads are served with cornbread and include a choice of beef, pork, chicken or just a simple “Spring Garden Salad.”
The ‘Texas Beef Brisket’ is served with a hearty portion of smoked tender slices of beef in a soft bun. Slather on some ‘Sweet Lumpy’s Barbecue Sauce’ and it’s a perfect sandwich.
The sandwiches are served with fries, but not just any ordinary fries. These are thin and delicious. At first glance the fries look like they could be overdone, but the golden color just signifies some good old-fashioned fries with the potato skins left on!
The slow-roasted pork baby back ribs are winners in more ways than one. They were voted ‘Best Ribs’ by Inland Empire Magazine in 2005 and deserved the honor. These tasty ribs can be ordered as a full rack or half rack.
Sweet Lumpy’s boasts that their “pork shoulders are smoked for over 12 hours, our brisket over 14 hours and our ribs for seven hours. We use hickory in our smokers to enhance the wonderful natural flavors.”
Love Sweet Lumpy’s Barbecue Sauce? You can take some home! They sell jars of the delicious spicy concoction. They make great gifts, but make sure you take home a jar for yourself too.
Everybody’s friendly at Sweet Lumpy’s. It is just a ‘down home’ place that serves delicious barbecue. Inland Empire Magazine is impressed, the Governor is impressed – so come down and see what all the fuss is about. You won’t be disappointed!
Sweet Lumpy’s BBQ
28464 Front Street
Old Town Temecula
Tues.-Sat., open at 11 a.m.
Sun., open at noon