First let me say that I have been eating Penn’s BBQ for over 40 years, so you’ll find my review very biased! I have had sandwiches from all over the United States and no where, including the BBQ capitals of the U.S., have I found a chopped Pork BBQ Sandwich as tasty as Penn’s BBQ.
Mr. Penn does not chop his BBQ meat and put it in a pan and keep it heated…NOPE. He keeps the meat warm and covered with a towel (old-style)…and CHOPS when you order your sandwich. The sound you hear is like music to your ears if you truly like chopped BBQ.
While he is chopping the BBQ, he is also heating the buns in a toaster oven, so you have a nice TOASTED BUN for your sandwich. Once he has all the meat chopped, and the buns out of the toaster, he piles up a generous amount of meat on the bottom bun, adds a dry slaw (but not too dry), and then adds his secret sauce.
The secret sauce is (using my best guess) a hybrid of catsup based/vinegar based sauce and in my opinion, the PERFECT consistency to soak into the slaw and the meat, but NOT into the sandwich. You won’t get a SOGGY sandwich at Penn’s. He then wraps up the sandwich in thin plain white paper. Your sandwich is then bagged and place into a plain brown sack. ..ready for you to eat.
Now you’re ready to eat!!! The first bite is awesome. As you bite down for your first bite, you’ll notice 3 different textures in the sandwich. The toasty bun, the crunchy slaw and meat. Oh…the meat is wonderful. Not mushy, chopped medium with bits of BARK scattered throughout…somehow you get a bite of BARK in every bite.
I live 150 miles from this BBQ place…I ride my motorcycle to Blytheville just to eat at this place!! That’s a 300 mile round trip and 6 hours of riding, just for a 30 minute lunch (2 jumbo BBQ sandwiches – HOT).
Penn’s does have sides and they are very good. They don’t sell ribs, they don’t sell brisket, they sell AWESOME BBQ sandwiches ONLY.
It is TAKE-OUT only. No seating, but who cares.
Do yourself a favor and try this place out. You’ll be glad you did!!