I was recently invited to Lovey’s BBQ on Marion Street in St. Boniface to dine with three social media friends. This was not my first time at Lovey’s — I do try to make the trip for their wonderful smoked wings on a regular basis. Repeat visits to a restaurant across town is rare for me though, Winnipeg has so many great restaurants that I prefer to “been there, done that” with most establishments, but Lovey’s always brings me back for more!
Before Lovey’s opened I had only ever been to one BBQ joint and that was in Fort Myers, Florida while on vacation in the late 90’s. I’m very excited by the insurgence of BBQ north of the border here in Winnipeg.
Over the past four years since Lovey’s, Winnipeg’s first BBQ establishment opened, my husband and I have been back for their Q on numerous occasions. On our first visit we decided to try a little bit of everything that Lovey’s smokes by ordering Lovey’s Mixer (perfect for two) – click the link to read more. I highly recommend this choice for first time visitors as it provides a lovely cross-section of Lovey’s offerings.
My husband and I have popped in for wings and ribs quite often since our first visit. We especially love their baby back ribs. We haven’t been to Lovey’s Wing Nights – Tuesday and Wednesday, nor on their Monday Night all you can eat ribs feast. But both of those are going on my calendar for the summer – who wants to join me?
On my 40th birthday, my husband had a very swanky day of surprises planned that started off in the Hamam at Ten Spa and concluded with an overnight stay at the Fairmont Hotel, dinner at Hy’s and opening night tickets to MTC.
After my spa time, we wanted to have a nice lunch downstairs from the spa at The Fort Garry Hotel’s Palm Lounge. However we ended up walking out of the restaurant before ordering due to a very loud gentleman carrying on a cell phone conversation across the room. Definitely not the type of atmosphere that they are known for… but I suggested we hit Lovey’s for some wings and some finger licking fun. The lesson learned? No matter how classy a gal you are, or how busy a day you have planned, you can always plan to pop into Lovey’s for a memorable meal.
Over the winter we also shared a takeout meal with a couple of good friends in the neighbourhood in support of a MeToWe fundraiser. Roger, the owner, is a huge supporter of our community, and their latest fundraising card is a super smart way for any organization or cause to raise funds easily. “Fundraising is a breeze with Lovey’s peel-a-deal cards. Valued at over $55, we give them to you for FREE, you sell them to support your cause and you keep the money! Super Easy!”
But back to the food and my most recent Lovey’s experience…
Our table of four ordered the vast Voyageur Platter (perfect for four), which included a bit of everything — a slab of St. Louis style side ribs, one whole BBQ chicken, one pound slow smoked beef brisket, BBQ pit beans, creamy coleslaw, cornbread muffins and fries.
I’m still focused on my Weight Release challenge for 2013, so I was heartened to learn that smoked BBQ items are actually quite a lean alternative for dining out. All the animal fat is melted off the meat while it’s being smoked. Learning how to smoke meat is on my culinary bucket list and I’m desperately seeking a great at-home smoker!
I also learned that all of Lovey’s proteins are locally sourced from Manitoba meat producers – a competitive advantage over the newly opened BBQ chains. I love the idea of keeping the money in our province!
First up were the wings, some deep-friend pickles (I’m still not a fan of these), and something I’d not yet tried, but which is now a new favourite – pulled pork poutine. Now I’m not a fan of french fries, nor poutine… so trust me when I say You’ve Gotta Try This!
Next up came the main course and it was a cafeteria-size serving tray loaded with garlic fries, smoked chicken, smoked ribs, coleslaw and my very favourite in-house baked beans. There was barely enough room on the table for the brisket and corn bread, but we made it work. What a feast!
I highly recommend this option for a carefree summer dinner, picnic, plus I think it’d be ideal to pick up on your way out to the cottage for an easy Friday meal. Lovey’s even has city-wide delivery using the services of Mobile Maitre’d if you don’t want to make the trek to St. Boniface
Needless to say, the four of us left the restaurant stuffed to the gills with yummy goodness as well as doggy bags to enjoy later and share with our families. The Voyageur Platter provides huge value to feed four (or more) people.
But no meal at Lovey’s is complete without a glass of their in-house, fresh-squeezed lemonade — another favourite of mine, and I could drink it all day long. It’s especially good with a shot of vodka!
I have to tell you that I’m a real fan of everything that Lovey’s does. I have referred many a carnivore to Lovey’s and I have never heard of anyone being disappointed. I could wax on for pages and pages about the tenderness of the meat, the tangy-ness of their BBQ sauce, but I truly recommend that you put Lovey’s on your Summer “Must-Do” Bucket List and if you have any friends coming to town… strongly suggest they check out Lovey’s for a real unique foodie adventure.