Ain't nothing like 'em nowhere
Leada DeVaney, Hartselle Enquirer
"Ain't nothing like 'em no where."
That's the sign hanging up in Dreamland, a famous rib joint in Tuscaloosa.
Greg and I went there last weekend after the Alabama vs. Southern Miss game. He's an Auburn fan (everyone has to have a fault, I guess) and had never been to the best barbecue restaurant in the world.
For those of you orange-and-blue folks who don't know what Dreamland is, I'll let you in on the secret. Dreamland is a barbecue rib joint located in the old Jerusalem Heights neighborhood of Tuscaloosa. It's a "joint" in the truest sense of the word. It's not a place where you go and expect white napkins on the tables. Instead, each table features a roll of paper towels.
Trust me, you will need them at Dreamland.
The restaurant itself is little more than a wooden shack, featuring a hodge-podge roof, small dining area and a big grill. The walls are decorated – or maybe held together – by an assortment of items.
There are bumper stickers and old license plates and t-shirts. There are autographs from celebrities who have stopped in, as well as sayings from some people who are just sharing their little gem of wisdom with the world.
Dreamland has become a stop-off place for folks – both famous and non-famous – when they come to Tuscaloosa.
Greg and I were two of the non-famous visitors who stopped in.
"Y'all grab a seat anywhere you can," the waitress said as we walked in. "Somebody will be there to clean off the table in a minute."
And they were.
In the meantime, Greg and I looked over the menu, as limited as it is.
"No beans, no slaw, no potato salad. Don't ask," the sign above the door says.
Tuscaloosa's Dreamland – the restaurant's original location – serves ribs, sauce and white bread. There are also chips, though I hear a rumor that they get offended if you ask for them.
We ordered a slab of ribs. They arrived on a styrofoam plate, dripping with sauce just waiting to be sopped up with some of that good old' stick to the roof of your mouth white bread.
We dug in.
"These are really good," the Auburn fan admitted, as he licked the sauce off his fingers.
Honoring our mama's requests from so many years ago, we cleaned our plate then sat back and recovered.
It was only when we were leaving that I spotted one particular autographed styrofoam plate tacked to the wall. It read "Hartselle Fire and Rescue, July 2002."
It's seems they are in on the secret as well.