Review: Glass City BBQ

Not content to let our little road trip to Lancaster be wasted, we decided to hit a BBQ place that we passed on Rte 22 on the way to our destination. If there’s anything that my husband and I are always down for, it’s a good BBQ joint. Since the places we’ve tried in Columbus so far (City BBQ, Pig Iron BBQ, Hoggy’s, Cook Shack) have been a bit “meh” so far, we were hoping for the best.


The place was hoppin’, with a bunch of cars and bikes parked out front, and since it was such a nice day, we asked to be seated at the picnic benches on the patio. The clientele were very diverse – you’re just as likely to see a group of bikers as you are a family of 4, and that suited us just fine.

The menu is fairly large, with only a small portion of it being BBQ (the rest was about evenly spread between sandwiches, subs and pizza). On a sad note, neither of our first choices (ribs or burgoo) were available at the time, which the waitress told me is a pretty common occurence. She made no secret of the fact that they run out of items from their menu all the time, and that it pisses regulars off.

So, that being that, we decided from what was available. For an appetizer, we shared an order of the Glass City Fries ($6.99), a pile of fries loaded with cheese, pork, jalapenos, tomatoes, green onions and BBQ sauce. Presentation was really sloppy, and the dish as the whole was just OK – flavors worked together but just barely, and the sour cream wasn’t even necessary.


Because they were out of the burgoo, the waitress was nice enough to comp my husband a bowl of chili ($5.99), which was advertised as being a brisket chili. We joked around about the chili being like a New Orleans king cake – if you were lucky enough to find the brisket in there you would have good luck for the rest of the year. The flavor itself was a bit flat – mostly chili powder and just a hint of cumin, and it lacked depth and/or bulk. Passable if you’re hungry, but not very good if you’re a chili connoisseur like I am.


Still, the bits of meat we found in both of the appetizers showed promise, so we didn’t write the place off just yet even though the appetizers were fairly mediocre.

Since my first choice (the three meats platter – chicken, ribs, and choice of brisket or pulled pork for $19.99) wasn’t available, the waitress allowed me to do a modified 3 meats platter (chicken, pulled pork and brisket) for $15.99 instead. While not cheap, the portion sizes were very generous and the platter also comes with two sides and a piece of cornbread. Let me just say that the BBQ is where it’s at when you go to Glass City. The pulled pork was flavorful although a bit on the dry side. The brisket was the best I’ve had outside of Tennessee, with a thick layer of flavorful bark and enough fat to keep it moist. The chicken? Was OMFG good. I’ll go back just for more of that chicken, which is smoked then finished on the barbecue. It was moist, and every morsel was full of that wonderful smoky, barbecued flavor that just screams summertime cookout. The two sides I chose were macaroni and cheese and baked beans. The mac and cheese was spectacular, whereas the baked beans were good, but lacked much of the meat that it was advertised to contain.


Glass City offers three different types of BBQ sauce – Mild, Hot, and Carolinas. The mild tastes like your average bottled sauce, nothing to write home about. The hot? Is a lukewarm version of the mild. The Carolinas? Oh yeah, now we’re talking. This was hands down my favorite type, sweet and tomatoey and vinegary at the same time. Added just the right amount of pucker and needed moistness to my pulled pork.


My husband had planned on getting an appetizer sized BBQ sampler as his entree, but since they were out of ribs, that idea went out the window might quick. Instead, he chose two smaller entrees.

First up was an order of 10 wings ($8.18), which he chose to be covered with Louisiana BBQ sauce, a cross between regular BBQ and buffalo sauce. Again, a bit of flavor, no real heat. The wings themselves were tiny, but were first smoked and then deep fried, so they had a depth of flavor that you don’t find in your average wings. Still, definitely not worth the price, which is a bit steep for the size/quantity of the wings.


His other entree was an order of Glass City Mini Hamburgers ($7.49), which were advertised as coming with grilled onions and special sauce, which was to be found nowhere. These were flavorful, but dry as a bone, and served on stale rolls. The chips, on the other hand, were great – made fresh to order, and sprinkled with seasoned salt.


So, in conclusion, if you decide to make the trip down there, or are in the area, do stop in for the BBQ, but steer clear of basically anything else on the menu.

If you’d like to go: Glass City BBQ, 391 Lincoln Ave, Lancaster, OH, 740.653.5227

Glass City BBQ on Urbanspoon

14 thoughts on “Review: Glass City BBQ

  1. NOhio

    If you are looking for the best BBQ in Columbus, you must try Smackies ( Go for the Sunday buffet so that you can sample from almost everything on the menu.

    5730 Cleveland Ave.
    Columbus, OH 43231

  2. abe moses

    glass city is a pretty lousy excuse for Lancaster’s only true bbq. my family and i have been there 4 times with anticipation that each time will be better. last time we went they were out of ribs and pulled pork, wtf? the waitresses and staff have been extremely nice, friendly and very nice to our kids; however, the food comes out luke warm, w have never been served within an hour and he prices are a littl steep. the bbq joint in logan is a little better but not much. this area is prime for a knock your socks off bbq joint.

  3. Jane Doe

    Please take my advice I worked at Glass City BBq for 2 years. The place is not what it seems, it turns into a whore house at night, and the owner is
    a drunk. The cooks are dirty and when the party starts at night every customer is allowed to go back and cook for themselves. People stay the night and sleep where ever they pass out. Vomit is always in the bar and floors……..Please re-think eating there! Be Warned………..

  4. B.J.

    This sounds not like a warning but rather a resentful backlash! Did you happen to get fired from Glass City perhaps? Here is some advice for you, slander causes lawsuits!

  5. Abe Moses

    Yeah I guess I am a masochist (sp). I really love BBQ and normally just cook at home; however, I really did think the place wsa going to get better over time. I sort of feel that the bar is where they make most of their money because we were there recently for a private party (I ate before I went) and the bar was rockin'. Anyway, I would love to see a family BBQ joint around Lancaster that is truly BBQ and not a steak house pretending to do BBQ like Texas Roadhouse, Etc.

  6. Jane Doe

    Darling B.J. No…We did not get fired from Glass city BBQ., and in no way is this meant to hurt anyone, its just the truth. Are you maybe the owner? Anyway sounds to me like you may be an investor in this business. Have you been there? Maybe you are the person who is always drunk on the floor. Unless you know any facts about this business, you really should re-think about eating there!!!

  7. John Doe

    I stopped there yesterday on the way home from California. I won't mince words, I will just say that it was simply the worst bbq I've ever had. My cousin agreed. I ordered brisket, which came in very thin slices, and had to be forcefully cut with a knife. Anybody who knows bbq knows that brisket should come in 1/4-1/2" slices and should be easily seperated with only a fork. I can't even guess what kind of meat this was. Also, the girl working there was a complete idiot. She asked if California was on a 12 hour time difference from Ohio.

  8. Townsend Brown

    WORST BBQ EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE, and perhaps… the worst BBQ in the Union. While it's true that Ohioans know nothing about BBQ, this establishment should not be found passable by even the least educated. Foodie expressed that, "The brisket was the best I’ve had outside of Tennessee", which is unfortunate, as the brisket was advertised as Texas style, and should be compared to as such. As Glass City BBQ is, most likely, the worst BBQ in the world, you should now know what to expect from Texas, which is in fact, the best. That is why Texas… has been blessed by God himself.

    My Review

    "Texas-style" Beef Brisket – No smoke ring. No smoke ring = not smoked. In fact, a ring of fat was still present around the perimeter. When I attempted to (gasp) cut the brisket, yes cut, my fork bounced off and went flying through the air. If you know brisket, if you've been to a proper BBQ, then you'd know the meet should have gently fallen apart and melted in your mouth. In reality, this amounted to a piece of microwaved roast beef that in fact, was indigestible, and barely edible.

    1/4 BBQ Chicken – Interestingly, the chicken DID have a smoke ring. Though, not much of one, and it still lacked the smoky sweet taste or scent one would have expected. It was also smothered in a generic, but tasty BBQ sauce. At first it looked promising, but, like the brisket, it was a dry, disappointing disaster. Fortunately it was edible with copious amounts of beer washing it down.

    Pulled Pork – The pulled pork would have been delicious if it had not been so dry. It soaked up BBQ sauce like a sponge, and lacked a strong smoky flavor. Overall, it was mediocre but recommended if your life depended on eating here.

    Potato Salad – Generic, probably store bought. Tasty, but nothing special. Edible.

    Baked Beans- Generic, probably store bought. Not much meat, if any, and lacking in any character. This is what you would expect from a can of baked beans.

    Beer Battered Onion Rings – Beer batter anything and it's going to be good. Unless of course, you put so much batter on the onion that you're left with a perfectly crisp outside and a grease saturated dough ball inside. What you have then my friends, is a big bunch of gooey disgusting shit that my dog wouldn't even eat. Which is exactly what you should expect from the menu at Glass City.

    Rating – 1/2 star (The food finally passed through my system 12 hours later so I had to give it credit for being edible)

    Pros – There's draft beer at the bar. Notice I'm not mentioning the food.

    Cons – An indigestable bowling ball of food in your gut.

  9. Glenn Williams

    Well my wife was that server,and it wasnt her fault that the food sucked.She was just joking with you guy's,So don't say that the server was A idiot,when you Californians can take a joke.

  10. m booth

    glass city is crappy and I lived in the south and the bar-b-q there is not red and tomatoey it is a vinegar based and delicious not the crap they serve the service is crap and a 25.00 gift certificate has to be used to dine in because when you want it take out they charge you 10.00 gratuity for you driving across town getting out of your car walking in to pick it up and oh by the way you have to spend 10.00 of your own money before you can use the 25.00 certificate,so we paid 20.00 extra for food that tasted like shit and I love it when they screw you over on take out you get home and open the box and it's like this is supposed to feed how many people? close your doors-you suck!!

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