Lucille’s BBQ in MainPlace Mall brings an excellent selection of some of the best BBQ in Southern California. The location just opened about two months ago and is a welcome addition for all of the hungry appetites that crave authentic barbeque with high quality ingredients made from scratch.
Upon entering Lucille’s, guests will be treated to a vibrant display of art on the doors and inside the restaurant. The manager told me they had an artist come in and hand paint all of the windows. Don’t they look great? Once you are graciously greeted up front with a huge dose of southern hospitality, your hostess will show you to your seat.
The first thing that will catch your eye in this restaurant is the layout in comparison to the other Lucille’s restaurants. The Santa Ana location is extremely spacious and the bar is the main centerpiece. Fresh air is big here because the restaurant features full-height windows that open outward offering guests a high view of the city from the middle floor of the mall. Lucille’s Flying Pig lounge is charming and features craft beers, wine and spirits, special appetizers and a full menu. The color scheme is fun and the oversized bar chairs offer plenty of comfort.
If you brought kids with you it’s no problem! Lucille’s loves kids and even offers them a cute coloring book with crayons. I love how it kept my daughter occupied for most of our meal.
First up was a refreshing cocktail. A jalapeno margarita for the hubby and a Whiskey Daisy for me! The jalapeno margarita comes with the jalapeno on a stick and you can steep it in your drink for however long you want. The longer you leave it in the spicier it will be.
My drink had High West double rye whiskey, Grand Marnier, lemon juice, sweet and sour, and a dash of orange bitters. It was so light and flavorful.
Then it was time for appetizers. Who can resist sweet, crunchy onion straws? Not me! It’s a mountain of irresistible buttermilk battered fresh onions, seasoned and deep-fried. It’s served with Lucille’s own BBQ ranch dipping sauce.
My son ordered the Pulled Pork Queso Dip and it was really really good. It had salty tortilla chips, homemade cheese sauce blended with smoked jalapenos, roasted pasilla peppers, smoked pulled pork, tomatoes, onions, spices and fresh cilantro. Are you drooling yet?
And don’t forget the sugar dusted biscuits. I bet you can’t eat just one.
We treaded carefully with the appetizers because we knew we were going to have to eat the main entrees. I looked through the menu for a long while when we sat down and decided to get the tri-tip. The creamy mashed potatoes and peanut coleslaw sides were an added bonus to my already incredible meal.
My husband had a half chicken, tri-tip, steamed veggies and a baked potato. This was a perfect gluten-free meal for him.
My son who also eats gluten-free had the pulled pork, half chicken, corn on the cob and sweet potato fries. If there is a way to this boy’s heart, it’s definitely through meat!
My other son ordered a bacon cheeseburger and my daughter ordered the mac-n-cheese. The burger is made with brisket and short rib so it does not have the same texture as a burger made with ground beef. The mac-n-cheese is made from scratch and is delicious.
I have no idea how we even made it to dessert but we somehow found room. We all shared a snickers ice cream pie (Chopped Snickers bars mixed with vanilla bean ice cream in a crisp, chocolate cookie crust served with homemade caramel and chocolate sauces.)
Ok, so we might have also shared a salted caramel cheesecake with ice cream a la mode. But you won’t judge, right?
And remember how I said Lucille’s loves kids? Here is further proof. They brought this cute sundae out for my daughter and she absolutely loves rainbow sprinkles, so we had the happiest girl ever!
Here is a video of the smoker at the back of the restaurant. Anyone can request a tour.
Special thanks to the manager Nick McMahon and our server Emily for all their hospitality. We had an awesome time.
Lucille’s Santa Ana
2800 N Main St #2160
Santa Ana, CA 92705