Chow Town

Chiefs fans, fear not: Denver is not a barbecue wasteland

Updated: 2013-11-14T16:46:08Z

By ARDIE A. DAVIS

The Denver Broncos have home field advantage this Sunday, plus the remarkably talented Peyton Manning at quarterback. What’s a Chiefs fan to do? And what’s in store for Chiefs fans who want barbecue in Denver?

Chiefs’ fans have many magic rituals and totems to ramp up wins. Face paint, dances, chants, shouts, costumes, good luck charms, jerseys with a favorite player’s name on the back, hugging an autographed game ball.

Fan rituals and totems have already worked magic nine times this season, along with top notch production from our coaches, players and general manager. The Broncos game calls for all of that magic, plus a new totem.

Before I introduce the new totem, you should know a few essentials about Denver barbecue, whether you’ll be watching the game live or on TV.

Although Denver has about half as many barbecue joints as Kansas City, it is not a barbecue wasteland. Thanks to advice from friends in Denver, I have enjoyed some excellent barbecue there.

Keep this in mind: Smoked beef brisket, pulled pork and hot link sandwiches are for sale in the BBQ Red Zone, Section 321, Sports Authority Stadium at Mile High. I don’t know anyone who can vouch for it, but I’d love to try all three.

Many respectable barbecue joints await you in Denver. Start with Denver barbecue aficionado and soul food expert, Adrian Miller’s Top 5:

• Boney’s BBQ at 1543 Champa St. in Denver.

• Country Time BBQ at 2504 W. Hampden Ave. in Englewood, Colo.

• Jim ‘N Nick’s Bar-B-Q at 24153 E. Prospect Ave. in Aurora, Colo., and 8264 E. 49th Ave. in Denver.

• Big Papa’s BBQ at 6265 E. Evans Ave., Unit 1, in Denver.

•  Moe’s Original Bar-B-Que has several locations in the Denver area.

I’ve tried Boney’s and Big Papa’s thus far. Miller is spot on with them. Brothers, Hickory House and Bennett’s are recommended on the OrangeMane Bronco fans’ online forum. Whatever you try please let me know how you rate it on appearance, tenderness and taste.

Finally, here’s a new Chiefs fan totem for the Bronco games: put a meatless KC barbecue pork or beef rib bone next to a meatless barbecue Denver lamb rib bone and wrap them with Chiefs logo duct tape.

Keep it with you at all times before and during the game. Win or lose, save it for the Broncos/ Chow Town Showdown on Dec. 1.

Make sure the bones are smothered in tape to avoid getting grease on you or in your pocket. Pork and beef ribs abound here. Get barbecue Denver ribs at Jack Stack or RJ’s, or grill your own. I found the Chiefs “Duck Tape” at Mission Hy-Vee.

Do it. “Show Me Your Ribs!” The rest is up to the coaches and players. Go Chiefs!

Ardie Davis is an iconic figure in the barbecue community. He founded a sauce contest on his backyard patio in 1984 that became the American Royal International Barbecue Sauce, Rub & Baste contest. He is a charter member of the Kansas City Barbeque Society and an inductee into the KCBS’s Hall of Flame. He has been interviewed on numerous food shows and writes for a variety of barbecue-related publications. He is also the author of a number of barbecue books, His most recent release book is “America’s Best BBQ Homestyle: What Champions Cook in Their Own Backyards.”

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