Atlanta restaurant reviews, culinary news, and gluttonous gossip by admitted foodaholic Serina Patrick

Old McDonald’s BBQ at Lake Lanier


Near the entrance to Lake Lanier Islands there is a BBQ dive called Old McDonald’s Real Pit BBQ. For years I thought I might find a big smoker and a redneck serving pulled pork on paper plates behind the sign with enormous red letters, but recently discovered there’s a cute brick and mortar restaurant with tables, chairs, and a collection of pig memorabilia just around the corner.

Guests order at the counter from a menu of standard meats and sides. Ribs, chopped or sliced pork, chopped beef, and smoked chicken are available as plates or by the pound, ideal for picnics at the lake.

LC and I stopped by on our way to the houseboat and picked up a few plates, two chopped pork and one smoked chicken, with a variety of sides. Each plate also came with a cup of Brunswick stew and Texas toast. If we loved it, perhaps we would get a few pounds for the 4th of July.

Turns out the standard fare was…just standard. We are partially to blame as we failed to request anything spicy, however, the pork lacked the wonderfully charred and chewy bits that I craved. Although I would have preferred chopped chicken, the quarter smoked bird was tasty. Both would have benefitted from a spicier sauce.

Mediocre sides included soupy slaw, chewy corn, and thickly battered fried okra. Green beans and mac ‘n’ cheese were better choices. LC had apparently eaten there before and liked the stew, but it failed to impress me. However, the Texas toast was awesome.

Although we didn’t order Old McDonald’s BBQ this 4th of July, we would certainly consider it for small parties in the future. They also offer catering if the party isn’t so small.

5774 Holiday Road, Buford 770-945-8608


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  1. Grant Goggans on

    Once upon a time, this place was completely amazing, but I’ve heard from so many sources that it isn’t as good as it once was. I last went in 2008 and it was just okay. But fifteen years ago, it really was something special.

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