18 Virginia BBQ Joints You’re Going to LOVE

by Casey Higgins | Posted: May 31, 2013 | Updated: Feb 9, 2016

Comments: 203 Comments

We’re always on the hunt for the best of Virginia – everything from hikes and drives to wines and eats. The list that follows includes 18 great BBQ joints for those who travel with their taste buds.

Note that these are not ranked, but they are recommended by locals and we invite you to leave a comment below to give a shout-out to your favorite.

Updated: July 2, 2015


1. In Virginia’s motorsports hotbed sits the family owned and operated Checkered Pig Barbecue. You might have seen this Martinsville gem on Food Network, the, or Versus, or tasted their award-winning ribs and sauces at a festival. No? Consider this the drop of the green flag for you to put your pedal to the metal.

Saucy's Walk-Up BBQ

Saucy’s Walk-Up BBQ

2. Saucy’s Walk-Up BBQ is a deceptive delight. A converted shipping container sits on the corner of 5th and Bollingbrook Streets in Petersburg. It’s there that you’ll literally walk up and order some of the most delicious homemade barbecue pork, chicken and ribs in Virginia. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? Southern Living found it to be noteworthy, so …

3. Hailed as the best pulled pork, chicken, ribs and brisket in the New River Valley, Due South BBQ in Christiansburg is indeed an award-winning establishment with quite a few first place claims to fame. Don’t miss out on their Tuesday night all-you-can-eat deal or their Wednesday night “kids eat free” opportunity.

4. The Northern Virginia and Washington, DC crowds LOVE Rocklands Barbeque and Grilling Company with their Alexandria and Arlington locations. Rocklands uses red oak and hickory to smoke their meats – a little cooking strategy that has garnered them “Best of DC” acknowledgements five years in a row.

5. If St. Louis style ribs and Memphis style BBQ are your weakness, The Galax Smokehouse in Galax is the place to be. In fact, everyone wants to be there. It didn’t take long after its 2003 opening for this BBQ joint to become a magnet for locals and tourists alike. When you’re good, you’re good.BBQ Exchange

BBQ Exchange

6. Old-school, slow-cooked, open-flame barbecue-you’re-going-to-LOVE comes from BBQ Exchange in Gordonsville. The Hartman’s have spent more than 30 years perfecting their hickory-smoked pork and chicken. You’re in for an amazing treat when you look up this whitewashed gem in Orange County.

7. Smitty’s Better Burger – An authentic 1950’s drive-in and Hampton Landmark.

8. Dixie Bones – Named one of the Top 100 Restaurants by Washingtonian Magazine. Woodbridge and Fredericksburg.

Log Cabin Barbecue

Log Cabin Barbecue

9. Log Cabin Barbecue – Enjoy your down-home barbecue in a 200 year old log cabin in Elkton.

Buzz and Ned's Real Barbecue

Buzz and Ned’s Real Barbecue

10. Buz and Ned’s Real Barbecue – Man v. Food and Throwdown with Bobby Flay have embraced Buz and Ned’s in Richmond.

11. Monk’s BBQ – Have a little Corcoran craft brew or wine with your southern-style barbecue in Purcellville.

12. Q Barbeque – “So good it won barbecue competitions across the country.” We’ll take that as good. Find it in Midlothian.

13. Pierce’s PITT Bar-B-Que   – Pierce’s hickory-smoked, Tennessee-style Bar-B-Que made with “Doc” Pierce’s Original Bar-B-Que Sauce brings you the flavor and taste that’s a true American original. Located in Williamsburg.

14. The Barbeque Grill – “Ribs must be served fresh from the smoker,” is the philosophy of this Vinton joint, so come get a fresh, hot rack Fridays after 5.

15. Allman’s BBQ in Fredericksburg – Serving BBQ since 1954 in Fredericksburg. Vicki says “I have never found any better than Mama’s pulled barbeque – as well as her slaw – yum! and the sauce – oh my!”

16. Alamo BBQ – Alamo in Richmond specializes in authentic Texas style BBQ, including an award winning beef brisket. Southwest influenced. Try the jalapeno mac-n-cheese!

17. Extra Billy’s Smokehouse – Great barbecue spot in Richmond with an on site brewery!

18. The Fishin’ PigFarmville’s fusion of great seafood and great barbecue is wrapped into one. Eat like a pig and drink like a fish!


Go ahead and start your food tour this weekend.

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203 Comments on "18 Virginia BBQ Joints You’re Going to LOVE"

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SW VA’s Parks Mill BBQ in Abingdon, VA.


Wolfe’s BBQ up from Abingdon in Marion, VA. Wolfe’s is soooo much better. Compare for yourself as I did.


When you are near Gainesville you gotta try “Bad to the Bone Smokehouse” and “The BONE” in Manassas

Jay Ponton

Another great BBQ source is Cowling’s BBQ in Waverly, Va, on Rt 460… The best NC style I’ve ever had!!

Mark Hite

King’s in Petersburg slightly better, both top the list of VA BBQ


Yeeessssss!! Cowling’s is the BEST!


I’m thinking Bad to the Bone Smokehouse in Gainesville should’ve made the list…
Voted best Bbq by Northern Va Magazine, and the pulled pork nachos are amazing!


Check out Deep Run Roadhouse in the West End in Richmond. The owner previously owned the Alamo. They have the best BBQ in Richmond by far. Amazing pulled pork burrito- with cornbread and jalapeño mac-n-cheese!! Great food and great staff, worth checking out.

Lynette Oren

I am feeling left out. There are no BBQ places listed in the Alexandria, Arlington towns. I wish there were some great ones. Love good BBQ. Any recommendations?

Mark Bravura
There isn’t any good barbeque in Alexandria or Arlington. Rocklands is an abomination. Pork Barrel sucks. Red Hot & Blue: shake my head. King Street Blues. No. Capitol Barbeque. Awful. Hill country. Garbage. That ‘Memphis Barbeque’ place that was in Crystal City. White table cloth barbeque. Need I say more? Head down to Woodbridge for Dixie Bones. It’s the only NoVA/DC spot I’ll even call barbeque. Don’t bother with the cornbread though. Super dry. Give the Alabama White sauce a try. I’ve never seen it outside of Alabama anywhere else. Completely different flavor profile. Goes great on chicken & pulled… Read more »
Kit Rudd

A new entrant that deserves a visit is Shawn’s Smokehouse BBQ Company in Culpeper. Open since March and they’ve already won accolades including best new restaurant and best catering in Fauquier County. In addition to the staples, they offer more creative entrees such as BBQ Burrito Bowls, loaded baked potatoes, smoked salmon, nachos etc. And they have all you can eat ribs on Monday and Tuesday as well as a kids eat free offer with the purchase of an adult entree.

K. Richardson

Yes, Shawn’s is outstanding and definitely deserves to be on this list! Good call, Kit. You’re right in line with really great barbecue. Living in Culpeper, I used to swear by the Culpeper Cattle Co. until Shawns came to town. Now, they have the best barbecue around until you hit the BBQ Exchange in Gordonsville. But driving past Shawn’s and smelling their slow smoked pork and beef is phenomenal. Tates better than it smells. Great place to stop on a trip up to Shenandoah.


I agree Shawn’s definitely deserves to be on that list. I was kind of shocked that they weren’t

J Dickerson

Why is Extra Billy’s not on this list. A Richmond staple for almost 30 years!

Lloyd Blevins

I think Bootleg BBQ in Floyd deserves to be on this list,. I highly recommend the ribs which are the meatiest I’ve ever had. Their hot sauce is amazing, however everything is so flavorful, you probably won’t want sauce.


Uh, Pierce’s Pitt IS on the list. Kwitcher bitchin’!