If you love ribs, heads up: Baby backs don’t get any more tender than the ones we tried on Saturday at Johnny Garlic’s, the affable Roseville restaurant co-owned by Food Network’s Guy Fieri. Served as a special at $24.95, which was actually a better deal than it sounds—it was a humongous two-pound rack, served with a big pile of fries—the meat not only fell off the bone but was delightfully unfatty, too. What’s the secret? According to manager John Ryall, the meat is lightly salted and peppered, then grilled. After peeling off the fat—a-ha!—the ribs go into the oven for about two-and-a-half hours in a mix of cherry barbecue sauce and water.
Ryall says customer response was so favorable that he ran out of ribs in one day. “I went through 32 portions on Saturday alone,” he says. “It blew me away.”
Ribs aren’t on Johnny’s permanent menu yet, but they will be soon, Ryall says. Meanwhile, he’s planning to offer them again on Thursday, June 11—but if Saturday’s sellout is any indication, you’ll want to get there on the early side.
Johnny Garlic’s California Pasta Grill, 10505 Fairway Drive, Roseville; (916) 789-2000; johnnygarlics.com