GQue BBQ "> clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
<span data-author="-1">GQue&nbsp;BBQ </span>
GQue BBQ
Adam Larkey

Denver's Essential Spots for Barbecue

Your summer 2019 barbecue guide is here

View as Map
GQue BBQ
| Adam Larkey

Denver didn’t use to be known for its smoked meats scene, but over the last decade, a finger-lickin’ barbecue scene has been growing steadily in the Mile High City. From staples like Georgia Boys and GQue to newcomers like Owlbear and AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q, Colorado’s flourishing barbecue culture is only bound to grow. These are the spots that smoke the finest meats, slather the best sauces, and serve up the choicest sides to comprise this ultimate list of Denver’s essential joints for barbecue.

Have another barbecue favorite? Send us a tip.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Georgia Boys BBQ

Copy Link

The good down-home Georgia Boys have perfected Southern-style barbecue in Longmont and have an outpost in Frederick. The Longmont location transports patrons directly to backcountry Georgia with rocking chairs out front and sunny Southern vibes. The pulled pork is arguably the best in the entire state, and the premium sides are not to be missed. Sweet potato casserole, hand-breaded fried okra, and collards ‘n' mustards pair perfectly with the high-quality, unbelievably tender smoked meat options.

<span data-author="-1">Georgia Boys&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Georgia Boys BBQ
Georgia Boys BBQ/Facebook

Wayne's Smoke Shack

Copy Link

Texas-style barbecue is what this beloved Superior smokehouse is all about. Tender brisket and ribs, smoked turkey, candied pork belly, and great sides get the crowds in early at this lunch-only spot. The shop is open from 11 a.m. until it runs out of meat. Wednesdays are all about the pork shoulder, which is not to be missed.

<span data-author="-1">Wayne’s Smoke&nbsp;Shack </span>
Wayne’s Smoke Shack
Wayne’s Smoke Shack/Facebook

GQue BBQ

Copy Link

Owner Jason Ganahl's passion for barbecue brought him to many national competitions and also to this brick-and-mortar shop in Westminster. If there is 30-day aged, prime hickory-smoked brisket, get it, but don't shy away from chicken wings, turkey, or pork. GQue’s sandwiches are worth a look: The Carolina features pulled pork and slaw, while The Meltdown features brisket with onion rings and cheese. Sides — apple slaw, baked beans, mac and cheese, onion rings — are done right.

<span data-author="-1">GQue&nbsp;BBQ </span>
GQue BBQ
Adam Larkey

Pepperbelly Barbecue

Copy Link

Pitmaster Ryan Smith studied the work of barbecue masters and graduated from the Texas Culinary Academy in Austin before bringing his craft to Arvada. Now he wood-smokes sausage, beef brisket, pulled pork, and more and serving it up on white-bread buns. Homemade sides include potato salad, charro beans, and a daily slaw special.

Pepperbelly
Pepperbelly
Pepperbelly [Official Site]

Globe Hall

Copy Link

At this no-frills saloon in north Denver, the meat trays are generous, the drinks are strong, and there’s always a show or live music going on. Diners can choose from wood-fired barbecue dishes done in a variety of takes — smoked turkey or chopped brisket tacos, pulled pork sandwiches, loaded nachos, sampler plates, and meat by the pound. Tasty accompanying sides include a smoked cheddar mac and cheese, sweet citrus apple slaw, and a creamy herbed potato salad.

Globe Hall
Globe Hall
Globe Hall [Official Site]

Ragin' Hog BBQ

Copy Link

Northwest Denver's go-to Southern barbecue spot is undoubtedly Ragin' Hog BBQ. All of the meat is smoked fresh daily and served with a variety of sides and accoutrements. Sauces are on-point and include Carolina, Georgia, Memphis, sweet, and hot. The meat is impossibly tender, and the coleslaw is easily some of the best in town. Check Facebook for daily Cajun specials like crawfish étouffée.

<span data-author="-1">Ragin’ Hog&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Ragin’ Hog BBQ
Ragin’ Hog BBQ/Facebook

Smok Barbecue - Denver

Copy Link

Located inside the Source Hotel and Market Hall in RiNo, this barbecue eatery boasts an eclectic offering of favorite smokehouse flavors. Influenced by his upbringing in Kansas City, Missouri, and Austin Texas — as well his years working in the kitchens at establishments like Oak at Fourteenth and Acorn — chef William Espiricueta’s approach to barbecue is thorough, thoughtful, and flavor-filled. Guests can select from sandwiches — brisket, smoked fish, fried Nashville hot chicken — smoked meat by the pound, typical sides like creamed corn, mac and cheese, cornbread, and coleslaw as well as smokey takes on a Cobb or pork belly cabbage salad.

Smok Barbecue
Smok Barbecue
Smok Barbecue/The Source [Official Site]

Owlbear Barbecue

Copy Link

After a four year journey of dishing out his smoked meats in temporary locations — as a food truck at Finn’s Manor and then as a pop-up — pitmaster Karl Fallenius has finally opened his permanent space in RiNo, dishing out what is consistently praised as some of “Denver’s best barbecue.” After stints at high-volume Texas joints like Franklin Barbecue and Blue Ox Barbecue, Fallenius brings his no-shortcuts approach to an 18-seat, counter-service restaurant on Larimer Street. Guests can dig into all the smokey, sustainable meat favorites — pulled pork, spare ribs, Texas-style brisket, and pastrami specials — and grab classic sides like mac and cheese, coleslaw, and pinto beans.

Owlbear Barbecue
Owlbear Barbecue
Owlbear Barbecue/Facebook

Rolling Smoke BBQ

Copy Link

From food truck to brick-and-mortar counters at the Stanley Marketplace and in Centennial, this family-owned operation led by Terry Walsh draws on Southern roots and offers smoked meats with all the sides and fixings. Don’t miss out on the bacon candy.

<span data-author="-1">Rolling Smoke&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Rolling Smoke BBQ
Rolling Smoke BBQ/Facebook

Yazoo BBQ Co.

Copy Link

Located in the heart of Denver, with a second location down in Greenwood Village, this Memphis-style barbecue shop has kept a steady stream of loyal customers that often buy out the daily supply of smoked meat. Owner Don Hines uses four types of spice rub — but no sauce — in his cooking process. He believes in letting the flavor of the smoked meat speak for itself before guests slather on their choice of sauce. Don’t miss the St. Louis-style pork ribs or the rooftop patio.

<span data-author="-1">Yazoo BBQ&nbsp;Co. </span>
Yazoo BBQ Co.
Yazoo BBQ Co./Facebook

Boney's Barbeque

Copy Link

With over six generations of family barbecue expertise and deep Southern roots, Boney's Barbeque is no joke. It specializes in slow-cooking, pit-style barbecue with a nod to influences from regions like Tennessee, Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, and the Carolinas. Try the beautifully smoked spare ribs or the famed Pig-a-Dilly sandwich with pulled pork, fried pickles, and coleslaw with a side of fried okra. Wash it down with a jar of sweet tea and a serving of peach cobbler.

<span data-author="-1">Boney’s&nbsp;Barbeque </span>
Boney’s Barbeque
Boney’s Barbeque/Facebook

Brothers BBQ

Copy Link

Brothers and owners Chris and Nick O’Sullivan founded their first Brothers BBQ joint more than two decades ago and have now grown the chain to five locations across the Denver metro area. The Capitol Hill location, like the others, may be simple in its furnishings but does not skimp out on its flavors. Influenced by Nick’s travels across the country, tasting every barbecue joint he came across, the establishment serves up a colorful array of flavor profiles with its hot links, brisket, back and spare ribs, pulled pork, and barbecue chicken — plus all the trimmings. Stop by on Thursdays for $1.50 pork ribs and beer specials.

Brothers BBQ
Brothers BBQ
Brothers BBQ [Official Site]

Smokin Yard's BBQ

Copy Link

A popular Idaho Springs establishment over the last 10 years, Smokin’ Yard’s also has become a go-to destination at its second location in the Baker neighborhood in Denver. Focused on Southern-style barbecue, this “meat and three” offers favorites like pulled pork, brisket, and burnt ends, plus all of the typical sides. Other notable offerings include the fried catfish, fried okra, and sloppy joes.

<span data-author="4877311">Smokin Yard’s BBQ </span>
Smokin Yard’s BBQ
Smokin Yard’s BBQ [Official Site]

AJ's Pit Bar-B-Q

Copy Link

Formerly known as BBQ Supply Co., owners Jared and Amanda Leonard’s new smokehouse, which relaunched earlier this year, now resides under the name of AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q. The south Denver locale focuses on Texas-style barbecue, using a cabinet smoker, burning Texas post oak, to cook the meats. The restaurant rebrand has also expanded the culinary offerings to include barbecue dishes like smoked wagyu pastrami, spicy beef sausage, and sides like truffle mac and cheese. Don’t miss Leonard’s Texas-style brisket. Guests can also find barrel-aged cocktails, craft beer on tap, whiskeys, and other rotating food specials. 

AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q
AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q
AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q [Official Site]

Roaming Buffalo BBQ

Copy Link

This south Downing Street institution takes a local approach, focusing on Colorado-sourced meat with menu offerings like pulled Colorado lamb shoulder, Colorado bison short ribs, and Colorado lamb shank. For a true experiment in meat-driven ecstasy, try the Real McCoy sandwich complete with sliced brisket, chopped pork, sausage, smoked Gouda, and honey pickled jalapeños. Sides have a Southwest lean to them, and include options like honey lime coleslaw and smoked poblano cheddar mac and cheese.

<span data-author="-1">Roaming Buffalo&nbsp;BBQ </span>
Roaming Buffalo BBQ
Roaming Buffalo BBQ/Facebook

TRU Colotexmex Barbecue

Copy Link

The parking lot of Pyramid Liquors on Littleton Boulevard is where TRU Colotexmex Barbecue is usually stationed. Pitmaster James Diaz works his magic on mesquite-smokes ribs, brisket (which he crafts into tacos), burnt ends, pork loin, and more. With a unique Tex-Mex style of smoky barbecue, his sides also include homemade flour tortillas and charro beans.

TRU Colotexmex
TRU Colotexmex
TRU Colotexmex [Official Site]

Jabo's Bar-Be-Q

Copy Link

Hickory-smoked Louisiana barbecue is the order of the day at Jabo’s. Dwight “Jabo” Lawson has taken over his father’s business, bringing Denverites generous home-style meals in a cozy establishment. Ribs, brisket, chicken, and links are all on the menu along with the typical sides. Jabo’s offers 22 types of homemade barbecue sauces to play with as well as a Utah sconut that is not to be missed.

Jabo’s Bar-B-Que
Jabo’s Bar-B-Que
Jabo’s Bar-B-Que [Official Site]

Georgia Boys BBQ

<span data-author="-1">Georgia Boys&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Georgia Boys BBQ
Georgia Boys BBQ/Facebook

The good down-home Georgia Boys have perfected Southern-style barbecue in Longmont and have an outpost in Frederick. The Longmont location transports patrons directly to backcountry Georgia with rocking chairs out front and sunny Southern vibes. The pulled pork is arguably the best in the entire state, and the premium sides are not to be missed. Sweet potato casserole, hand-breaded fried okra, and collards ‘n' mustards pair perfectly with the high-quality, unbelievably tender smoked meat options.

<span data-author="-1">Georgia Boys&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Georgia Boys BBQ
Georgia Boys BBQ/Facebook

Wayne's Smoke Shack

<span data-author="-1">Wayne’s Smoke&nbsp;Shack </span>
Wayne’s Smoke Shack
Wayne’s Smoke Shack/Facebook

Texas-style barbecue is what this beloved Superior smokehouse is all about. Tender brisket and ribs, smoked turkey, candied pork belly, and great sides get the crowds in early at this lunch-only spot. The shop is open from 11 a.m. until it runs out of meat. Wednesdays are all about the pork shoulder, which is not to be missed.

<span data-author="-1">Wayne’s Smoke&nbsp;Shack </span>
Wayne’s Smoke Shack
Wayne’s Smoke Shack/Facebook

GQue BBQ

<span data-author="-1">GQue&nbsp;BBQ </span>
GQue BBQ
Adam Larkey

Owner Jason Ganahl's passion for barbecue brought him to many national competitions and also to this brick-and-mortar shop in Westminster. If there is 30-day aged, prime hickory-smoked brisket, get it, but don't shy away from chicken wings, turkey, or pork. GQue’s sandwiches are worth a look: The Carolina features pulled pork and slaw, while The Meltdown features brisket with onion rings and cheese. Sides — apple slaw, baked beans, mac and cheese, onion rings — are done right.

<span data-author="-1">GQue&nbsp;BBQ </span>
GQue BBQ
Adam Larkey

Pepperbelly Barbecue

Pepperbelly
Pepperbelly
Pepperbelly [Official Site]

Pitmaster Ryan Smith studied the work of barbecue masters and graduated from the Texas Culinary Academy in Austin before bringing his craft to Arvada. Now he wood-smokes sausage, beef brisket, pulled pork, and more and serving it up on white-bread buns. Homemade sides include potato salad, charro beans, and a daily slaw special.

Pepperbelly
Pepperbelly
Pepperbelly [Official Site]

Globe Hall

Globe Hall
Globe Hall
Globe Hall [Official Site]

At this no-frills saloon in north Denver, the meat trays are generous, the drinks are strong, and there’s always a show or live music going on. Diners can choose from wood-fired barbecue dishes done in a variety of takes — smoked turkey or chopped brisket tacos, pulled pork sandwiches, loaded nachos, sampler plates, and meat by the pound. Tasty accompanying sides include a smoked cheddar mac and cheese, sweet citrus apple slaw, and a creamy herbed potato salad.

Globe Hall
Globe Hall
Globe Hall [Official Site]

Ragin' Hog BBQ

<span data-author="-1">Ragin’ Hog&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Ragin’ Hog BBQ
Ragin’ Hog BBQ/Facebook

Northwest Denver's go-to Southern barbecue spot is undoubtedly Ragin' Hog BBQ. All of the meat is smoked fresh daily and served with a variety of sides and accoutrements. Sauces are on-point and include Carolina, Georgia, Memphis, sweet, and hot. The meat is impossibly tender, and the coleslaw is easily some of the best in town. Check Facebook for daily Cajun specials like crawfish étouffée.

<span data-author="-1">Ragin’ Hog&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Ragin’ Hog BBQ
Ragin’ Hog BBQ/Facebook

Smok Barbecue - Denver

Smok Barbecue
Smok Barbecue
Smok Barbecue/The Source [Official Site]

Located inside the Source Hotel and Market Hall in RiNo, this barbecue eatery boasts an eclectic offering of favorite smokehouse flavors. Influenced by his upbringing in Kansas City, Missouri, and Austin Texas — as well his years working in the kitchens at establishments like Oak at Fourteenth and Acorn — chef William Espiricueta’s approach to barbecue is thorough, thoughtful, and flavor-filled. Guests can select from sandwiches — brisket, smoked fish, fried Nashville hot chicken — smoked meat by the pound, typical sides like creamed corn, mac and cheese, cornbread, and coleslaw as well as smokey takes on a Cobb or pork belly cabbage salad.

Smok Barbecue
Smok Barbecue
Smok Barbecue/The Source [Official Site]

Owlbear Barbecue

Owlbear Barbecue
Owlbear Barbecue
Owlbear Barbecue/Facebook

After a four year journey of dishing out his smoked meats in temporary locations — as a food truck at Finn’s Manor and then as a pop-up — pitmaster Karl Fallenius has finally opened his permanent space in RiNo, dishing out what is consistently praised as some of “Denver’s best barbecue.” After stints at high-volume Texas joints like Franklin Barbecue and Blue Ox Barbecue, Fallenius brings his no-shortcuts approach to an 18-seat, counter-service restaurant on Larimer Street. Guests can dig into all the smokey, sustainable meat favorites — pulled pork, spare ribs, Texas-style brisket, and pastrami specials — and grab classic sides like mac and cheese, coleslaw, and pinto beans.

Owlbear Barbecue
Owlbear Barbecue
Owlbear Barbecue/Facebook

Rolling Smoke BBQ

<span data-author="-1">Rolling Smoke&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Rolling Smoke BBQ
Rolling Smoke BBQ/Facebook

From food truck to brick-and-mortar counters at the Stanley Marketplace and in Centennial, this family-owned operation led by Terry Walsh draws on Southern roots and offers smoked meats with all the sides and fixings. Don’t miss out on the bacon candy.

<span data-author="-1">Rolling Smoke&nbsp;BBQ</span>
Rolling Smoke BBQ
Rolling Smoke BBQ/Facebook

Yazoo BBQ Co.

<span data-author="-1">Yazoo BBQ&nbsp;Co. </span>
Yazoo BBQ Co.
Yazoo BBQ Co./Facebook

Located in the heart of Denver, with a second location down in Greenwood Village, this Memphis-style barbecue shop has kept a steady stream of loyal customers that often buy out the daily supply of smoked meat. Owner Don Hines uses four types of spice rub — but no sauce — in his cooking process. He believes in letting the flavor of the smoked meat speak for itself before guests slather on their choice of sauce. Don’t miss the St. Louis-style pork ribs or the rooftop patio.

<span data-author="-1">Yazoo BBQ&nbsp;Co. </span>
Yazoo BBQ Co.
Yazoo BBQ Co./Facebook

Boney's Barbeque

<span data-author="-1">Boney’s&nbsp;Barbeque </span>
Boney’s Barbeque
Boney’s Barbeque/Facebook

With over six generations of family barbecue expertise and deep Southern roots, Boney's Barbeque is no joke. It specializes in slow-cooking, pit-style barbecue with a nod to influences from regions like Tennessee, Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, and the Carolinas. Try the beautifully smoked spare ribs or the famed Pig-a-Dilly sandwich with pulled pork, fried pickles, and coleslaw with a side of fried okra. Wash it down with a jar of sweet tea and a serving of peach cobbler.

<span data-author="-1">Boney’s&nbsp;Barbeque </span>
Boney’s Barbeque
Boney’s Barbeque/Facebook

Brothers BBQ

Brothers BBQ
Brothers BBQ
Brothers BBQ [Official Site]

Brothers and owners Chris and Nick O’Sullivan founded their first Brothers BBQ joint more than two decades ago and have now grown the chain to five locations across the Denver metro area. The Capitol Hill location, like the others, may be simple in its furnishings but does not skimp out on its flavors. Influenced by Nick’s travels across the country, tasting every barbecue joint he came across, the establishment serves up a colorful array of flavor profiles with its hot links, brisket, back and spare ribs, pulled pork, and barbecue chicken — plus all the trimmings. Stop by on Thursdays for $1.50 pork ribs and beer specials.

Brothers BBQ
Brothers BBQ
Brothers BBQ [Official Site]

Smokin Yard's BBQ

<span data-author="4877311">Smokin Yard’s BBQ </span>
Smokin Yard’s BBQ
Smokin Yard’s BBQ [Official Site]

A popular Idaho Springs establishment over the last 10 years, Smokin’ Yard’s also has become a go-to destination at its second location in the Baker neighborhood in Denver. Focused on Southern-style barbecue, this “meat and three” offers favorites like pulled pork, brisket, and burnt ends, plus all of the typical sides. Other notable offerings include the fried catfish, fried okra, and sloppy joes.

<span data-author="4877311">Smokin Yard’s BBQ </span>
Smokin Yard’s BBQ
Smokin Yard’s BBQ [Official Site]

AJ's Pit Bar-B-Q

AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q
AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q
AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q [Official Site]

Formerly known as BBQ Supply Co., owners Jared and Amanda Leonard’s new smokehouse, which relaunched earlier this year, now resides under the name of AJ’s Pit Bar-B-Q. The south Denver locale focuses on Texas-style barbecue, using a cabinet smoker, burning Texas post oak, to cook the meats. The restaurant rebrand has also expanded the culinary offerings to include barbecue dishes like smoked wagyu pastrami, spicy beef sausage, and sides like truffle mac and cheese. Don’t miss Leonard’s Texas-style brisket. Guests can also find barrel-aged cocktails, craft beer on tap, whiskeys, and other rotating food specials.