Solly's Tavern is trading its bar food menu for barbecue come March 1. The U Street bar is partnering with Sloppy Mama's Barbeque food truck to permanently take over its kitchen.
"The food [at Solly's] was actually pretty good, but nobody expected to eat there," says Sloppy Mama's owner Joe Neuman. "It was a place to go to get PBR and shots of whiskey."
The bar will still have plenty of cheap drinks, but Neuman hopes it will now also become a destination for brisket, smoked chicken, chicken wings, and pulled pork. Neuman plans to eventually bring in a charbroiler for ribs as well. The menu will be fairly traditional with meats and sides plus sandwiches.
The food truck is moving its kitchen from Chantilly, Va. to D.C. food incubator Mess Hall at the end of the month. In addition to using the kitchen at Solly's, Neuman will smoke at Mess Hall and transport the meats over to the restaurant. Neuman has previously set up his smoker on Solly's patio for a number of pop-ups. With the move to D.C., owner John "Solly" Soloman approached Neuman about making their collaboration a little more permanent.
Although the menu isn't slated to officially switch until March, Sloppy Mama's will be at Solly's Feb. 12 through 14 to settle in. In the meantime, you can find the barbecue during Friday night pop-ups at Sauf Haus.
After the move, Sloppy Mama's will continue to operate its food truck. And eventually, Neuman also hopes to have a place of his own: "This is actually kind of the test run for that," he says.
Photo courtesy Sloppy Mama's