No, it doesn't involve ribs marinated in the tears of downtrodden sports fans. But if chef Michael Symon has his way, Cleveland-style barbecue will be the next distinct variation on America's greatest contribution to gastronomy -- well, behind Taco Bell, of course.
The Cleveland native told Playboy magazine he's not just opening Mabel's BBQ in C-Town soon... but inventing an entirely Midwestern take on BBQ. Along with the traditional ribs, pulled pork, and other delightful animals cooked slow and low, Symon will serve kielbasa and fermented kraut as an homage to Cleveland's Eastern European roots. And the restaurant will smoke its food over applewood, given the Buckeye State's proliferation of apple trees. But that's not all.
Mabel's grub will pass Dawg Pound inspection -- and not because the restaurant's named after the chef's pup. Symon embraced the city's blood rivalry with Pittsburgh (Browns-Steelers, duh), eschewing ketchup and the Pittsburgh-based Heinz empire for Cleveland's famous Stadium Mustard as a base for sauces. From Playboy: