Ray’s pulls perfect pork

By Nate Linhart

I was greeted by the smoky aroma of barbecue at Ray’s Chicago BBQ and Slots, 870 W. Lincoln Highway. For being a two-week-old restaurant, it provided the exact smell I wanted when entering any barbecue place.

The atmosphere was reminiscent of a homey country joint. The wooden walls, dim lighting and spacious layout made the place cozy.

The menu includes barbecue foods and fried chicken. Sandwiches cost about $8 while baby back ribs can cost $15 to $20. Sides, including french fries, cornbread and onion rings, ranged from $2 to $4. The prices were reasonable for the portions I received.

The pulled pork I ordered was huge and was cooked to perfection. There was a mountain of pork which was smothered with barbecue sauce. The sandwich put a huge grin on my face while I devoured it.

Ray’s offered a ribs special, so I got a taste of that, too. The ribs were smoky and fell off the bone nicely. Ribs can be one of the more difficult foods to cook well, but Ray’s chefs overcame the challenge.

My favorite side was the mac and cheese. I enjoyed how creamy it was. The barbecue sauce at Ray’s was so good I found myself creating an odd yet genius mixture of mac and cheese with the barbecue sauce.

Some of the employees were extremely friendly, which made my experience even more pleasant. I loved Ray’s so much I went again the next day.