Nonplussed: that’s my take on this DU hangout in a nutshell. I’d never intended to set foot in there, since never setting foot in its predecessor, the shabby-looking Smugs, had worked out pretty well for all involved. But trusted pals Mantonat & Amy had sworn, albeit with some bafflement on their own part, that the wings were worth a shot; hope against the odds—& the need for some Celtics on a big screen—got me through the door.

Boone’s claims to “smoke our BBQ right in the backyard,” by which they seem to mean a covered annex in the parking lot—at least that’s whence the admittedly enticing aromas waft. Because I wanted to taste that smell right in the meat, I suggested we forego a rub & stick with 1 of 10 sauces (which range from “wimpy” to “waiver required”; we opted for the medium-hot, sweetish Jalapeño Gold.

Now, I can’t tell you Boone’s suddenly tops my list of local wing slingers—or rather, I can tell you it doesn’t; that honor currently goes to The Red Claw &, believe it or not, Le Grand Bistro & Oyster Bar. But they were a hell of a lot better, plump & juicy, than I’d have bet dollars or doughnuts on.

That was true of the ‘cue in general. Again, I wouldn’t begin to pit Boone’s platters against those of a true pitmaster or even some talented enthusiasts I know. But they did all right in a pinch (see: Celtics). For instance, the shaved pot roast was a little overdone for my tastes, but still flavorful &, surprisingly not at all dry; the pulled pork, too, though lacking textural integrity—practically minced—possessed some punch. I didn’t try the coleslaw, but crinkle-cut sweet-potato fries were just fine, & the cornbread fritters rocked—hot & salty-crunchy on the outside, dense & sweet within. (I’d say the napkin havoc is evidence of reasonable quality, but my napkins always end up looking like that. So it’s more like a cry for help.)

The Director’s ribs & fries were just average, though the tangy baked beans at least were a half-notch above.

Recently I was across the street at Morgan’s Liquors & overheard a clerk praising Boone’s hummus, of all things; I won’t hold my breath until the next Celtics showdown, but I might amble back to test her opinion one of these days.

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