E&J 5 Buck BBQ, better known as the “$5 Rib Man” by the students of Florida A&M University, can be found not too far from campus on South Monroe Street.
E&J’s is a co-owned family barbecue business. The co-owners, Edwin Barcus and Cederick Davis, placed their business in an open parking lot with a food truck, tent and grill. As I was pulling in, Barcus, father of Davis, was helping to direct his customers into the parking lot and a parking space. The staff even greets you as you approach the food truck to place your order.
I immediately began to feel like I was back home at the family barbecue. The warm smiles, smell of chicken on the grill and beans in the pot is definitely the way to lure customers into line. Popular throughout the community, E&J’s is known for its $5 rib plates.
Each plate includes one entree, two sides of your choice and a piece of bread. There are many entrees to choose from such as ribs, chicken, sausage, burgers and pulled pork. From there you have to narrow down whether you want the baked beans and potato salad or the cole slaw and mac & cheese.
The line was wrapped around the food truck at about 2 p.m. People of all ages were in line trying to get a $5 plate. The wait was about 20 to 25 minutes. When I inquired about the wait time, I was told that they make each and every plate to order.
I chose to get the ribs as my entrée with baked beans and mac & cheese for my sides. It didn’t take too long for my plate to be ready. When I got my food it was piping hot and smelled amazing.
There aren’t any seats to eat out there, so everything is definitely meant to take to go. As I was walking to my car, I noticed that a lot of the customers were sitting and eating in their cars. While standing in line a woman described the food to be “a little taste of the old family barbecue.”
It wasn’t even 10 minutes after I got my food before my plate was clean. The ribs were fall off the bone tender and evenly covered in barbecue sauce. The portions that I received were actually pretty large in size.
I’m usually really hesitant about trying someone other than my grandmother’s baked beans but E&J’s baked beans were delicious. It turns out that one of the owners, Edwin and his wife, Janice, started this business back in 2013 with their own family recipe.
I would definitely recommend E&J 5 Buck BBQ to everyone. The environment is family oriented and the food is exquisite. I will more than likely be returning to get another plate at the end of the week.
E&J’s is only open from Tuesday- Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is located at 1622 S. Monroe St.