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Buster Rhino's


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I visited Buster Rhino's BBQ cafe and take out today,at 7-2201 Thickson Rd South, Whitby. I had authentic back ribs, smoked in hardwood, and presented with a true tomato-vinegar sauce from central South Carolina.

Here is Darryl Koster, the pitmaster


And racks of maple smoked pork ribs ready for a grill for presentation.


Here is the take out plate: a rack of ribs (half are shown) with a good smoke ring, piquant baked beans, a hushpuppy (cornbread fritter with onion), and stuffed jalapeno (creamcheese, bacon wrapped.


Nice ribs, and sides, at $14


Duckdown had fresh cut fries with his rack, and cleaned them all up!

There is a conservation area nearby for a pleasant stop. This will be a nice Friday P.M. option in spring and summer.

They are not open on weekends.

Edited by jayt90 (log)
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This WAS a closely guarded secret (except for Chowhound), you party-crasher! :D

In all seriousness, Buster's is a gem. In my humble opinion, it's the best BBQ in Ontario. That may be a broad claim, but if you tasted a good sampling of the crap that passes for BBQ in the GTA, you'll agree. Actually, I know you've done exactly that jayt90, what's your take? Would you agree it's the best Ontario has to offer? Especially their pulled pork. And their bottle sauces are delicious to take home and use on your own attempts at channeling the South.

Anyway, contrary to my opening statement, thanks for getting the word out. Buster's deserves all the business it can get. Being located in Whitby (in an industrial area no less) doesn't help, I'm sure.

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In my humble opinion, it's the best BBQ in Ontario. 

Hmm - them's fighting words.

I've heard good things about Buster's - but NC style isn't my favourite (deliberate change from SC - I think the tomato vinegar style is mostly western NC - I associate mustard/vinegar with SC and, incidentally prefer it to the tomato/vinegar version; but indeed the cooking styles are similar: EDIT - just noticed the thread title is indeed NC, but the first post refers to a SC sauce). And, as he's not open at weekends that means joining the rush-hour traffic if I'm going there.

Which, in turn means that there's another candidate (sort of, right now it's closed for winter until Victoria day weekend) just outside Midland.

Mad Michaels in Wyebridge.

It's the best I've found (so far) - but Ontario's a big place!


I won't challenge that Buster could be best in GTA - let's face it, that's not too difficult!

Incidentally, rather than getting into a discussion over styles of BBQ, I think a more productive avenue is to consider the cooking/smoking/any rub used as a cooking discussion (including cuts of meat) - where we may find more agreement - and treat the sauce separately. Then I can initiate what I consider the 'real issue' - can an 'Ontario-style sauce' be developed that gives this area it's own signature/flavour. The obvious ingredient is to sweeten with maple sugar/syrup and develop a sauce based on that. Another addition might be the piri-piri sauce (or similar) associated with our Portuguese community - certainly that makes the Churrasco chicken here taste "better" (my opinion - perhaps could substitute "different") than is available in most North American places.

Then maybe we can have some 'genuine' Ontario BBQ rather than the mostly substandard 'Southern' copies that we've experienced in the past.

Edited by estufarian (log)
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I went there with another Chowhound, Duckdown. We were given a tour of the spotless kitchen and we had to wear hairnets too. That's standard in Ontario, I believe, although I haven't visited other kitchens recently.

Darryl learned his BBQ from relatives in North Augusta, S.C.

The sauce really is good, and home made, perhaps better than the commercial version of Buster's I bought last year in Costco.

The small counter and eating area (5 or 6 tables) is in an industrial strip, beacuse the main business is producing racks, pulled pork, brisket etc.sauces and sides for the restaurant and bar trade. THere two other chefs/cooks to put out a consistent product line.

At various times I have purchased backyard supplies there: rubs, sauce, spices, and Quebec maple charcoal. I've enjoyed the take out food, and the helpful advice for my own back yard efforts.

estufarian, there is chicken here as well, but I haven't tried it yet. I like your idea of a maple flavored Ontario sauce. What goes into a piri piri?

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piri piri sauce when done right is SO good

i like to have my piri piri sauce with a dash of chicken :D

I'm not sure what's in a traditional piri piri but Emeril Lagasse's version sounds like it has the right flavour profile. It has olive oil, jalapenos, poblanos, red pepper, salt, pepper, and garlic. I think it's the poblanos specifically that give it a wonderful character. I don't believe it's a vinegary sauce ever either... it's smokey and spicy and all around wonderful. I'm trying to revive my tasty memory but i think in Toronto's version there might be some ketchup? I'm thinking i detected that sort of sweetness and mild tartness but i could be just dreaming that up.

I also think that a maple bbq sauce would be wonderful. Maple and pork would be heavenly together! I personally like maple syrup with lots and lots of caynene as a sauce for pork tenderloins. I toss in some orange and lemon juice along with their rinds as well. Unfortunatley I can only do this in bbq season at other people's houses as it's not condo oven friendly =(

Works well as a chicken glaze too.

Edited by CoffeeAddict (log)
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Hey - maybe I've hit a chord here.

I was thinking maple syrup + piri-piri in the same sauce - but whatever it is, surely the key issue is that we NEED an Ontario sauce so we can 'walk (and eat) proud'.

And (assuming some entrepreneur will read this) - why not develop a few different sauces and invite all-comers in and do a taste-off (over a few weeks). Should boost attendance anyway, and then everyone will (should?) come back to taste the winner. Should garner at least one-third regular returning customers. Plus can also boast on their website that they serve 'Toronto's Favourite Sauce' (and as a side benefit mute criticism that it's not as good as KC-style (or NC or the rest of the US)). This seems to be a big win-win proposition.

I'll take my reward in BBQ!

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