Redbones Barbeque


116 Reviews
Redbones BarbequeRedbones Barbeque

Type: Bar, Eatery

55 Chester St
Somerville, Massachusetts, 02144-3001
United States

(617) 628-2200 | map

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Reviews: 116 | Ratings: 153
Photo of Theheroguy
4.29/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5 | food: 3.75

Redbones has a great beer selection. They have a variety of sizes 10.5 oz-33oz. Their menu has detailed descriptions of the beers with prices listed for each serving size. Their prices are great and the staff knows how to serve beer properly. The food is great but it isn't authentic barbecue its like Tex-Mex compared to Mexican food. It is delicious but it just not the same. You can't go wrong with this place.

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Photo of Reagan1984
2.75/5  rDev -34.2%

Truly one of the most over-rated places ever. Let's be sure to split this into two distinct reviews. Their beer list is nice and if you are ONLY looking for a quality beer and are standing out front. Fine, pop in and only order a beer. However, in a world of choices as a whole this place is nowhere near a great option. The BBQ claims to be authentic and isn't even close. Let's just say I asked if they had NC vinegar style sauce...... the waiter literally brought me cider vinegar. just cider vinegar. Go elsewhere for food & beer

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Photo of Jodi215
4.34/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4.75

Loved this place. Went here for dinner while visiting the Boston area. The atmosphere is absolutely crazy, We sat in the basement which is painted black with wild colorful paintings covering the walls. Most or all of them have aliens in them.Everything about this place says fun. Quality was excellent all around. Service was friendly and reasonably fast. We ate early but by the time we got our food the place was full and people were waiting to get in by the time we left. Beer selection was outstanding and the food was really really good. I had ribs and they were the best I've had since we started this vacation and were as good as what we get at our favorite BBQ Beachwood on the west coast. My husband had the brisket and it was melt in your mouth. I really enjoyed their beans which were black eyed peas in a savory sauce. The prices were a little high but not bad considering it's in the big city. We would go back again and again if we ever come to Boston again.

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Photo of ricknelson
4.39/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

This is a great pub/restaurant in Somerville, MA.. Easy to find; on the "T" Red Line at Davis station.
Exit "T" go left on Elm St.; walk a short distance and turn right onto Chester. Look up a see the sign
for Redbone's just down the street. It has a long bar, but it will probably be full during busy nights.
Plenty of seating, great beer selection; great BBQ specials. Only draw back; its very noisy...

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

I went here for the first time this past Saturday after the ACBF, its really not what I had imagined it would be. It's tightly packed with chairs, loud, eclectic and crowded. We've got a bar on the left with seating against the wall and seating at the bar as well. On the right side of the wall is the main dining area. We grabbed a beer and snagged a couple of seats in the bar area while we waited for our table. The service was great despite the number of patrons filling the place like they know how to handle busy. We waited 30 min or so for out table and ordered some hush puppies as an appetizer. We both got brisket, I got a plate and my company had a sandwich. The food is great, the brisket was tender, ample and flavorful, the dirty rice side was also great. Its barbeque and its done well and priced as such. If in the area I would definitely come back.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is a serious BBQ place with an extensive choice of BBQ meat. The plates are huge and I had hard time eating more then half of what was in my plate. Extensive selection of craft beers from MA and around the world is also plus. The place is quite popular and we had to wait about half-hour before being seated even though we showed past 8pm on a Sunday night. It doesn’t really matter has it leave time to sit around the bar and have a few drinks. The waitress was great and really helpful. The only things that I though could be improving upon would be the sides, the coleslaw was lacking in flavour and the beans were not sweet or smoky enough (the mac and cheese was great though). This place is really worth the half-hour train ride from Central Boston.

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Photo of seanwhite
3.7/5  rDev -11.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I Love Redbones! I was killing for some BBQ since moving up here from NC, and Red Bones hit the spot. We frequent this place often because of the awesome environment, delicious hot comfort food, beer wheel (you'll hear more about that later) and friendly staff.

While Redbones offers a dining area, we always sit at the bar upstairs. This, in my opinion, is where the action is. You may have to stay for a while before getting seats but I promise it's worth the wait.

What is this wheel you ask? It's a wheel of fortune wheel that lands on a number. This number corresponds with a beer (huge beer selection). You have to drink the beer you are given....while this sounds risky, it really makes it a fun experience.

The food is delicious.... I go between the pulled pork sandwich and the buffalo wings. The hush puppies are also to die for. They offer a million different ways to eat meat...what's not to love? Just go, trust me.

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Photo of Duhast500
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I went here on a random Tuesday night looking to get a few good craft beers and some good eats. I was delighted by the food menu and the selection of beers was better then most places. I manged to even have a local favorite on cask. I was dining late at night but what I ordered was really Delicious and was ready pretty quickly as I enjoyed the nightlife while it was getting ready. The bar tender was occupied for part of the time while I ran empty on my first beer but made up for it by getting my next beer right to me with a smile. Good prices for the beer and food I had I would totally consider coming back here again.

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Photo of cbutova
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

RedBones is a good stop for any food and beer enthusiast. The atmosphere is a pretty crowded restaurant with small tables and a busy feel. Usually packed and a ton of servers running all over the place. Quality of the food and beer is good, I have been satisfied with both on several occasions. Service is the only gripe I have with Redbones. Both times I went, it was fairly slow to get in and get food. The one time we asked for a split check, we literally had to beg the waitress and she was still very rude about it, it took more time for her to argue with us then to actually just split the check. Beer selection is always above average, a great taplist that covers all bases. Good locals and craft beer from around the country. Cambridge Brewing is usually represented well here. Food was awesome both times I had it, great ribs and pork dishes, as well as sides for the BBQ. On the pricier side for me (not sure how Boston residents feel).

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Photo of mltobin
3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I walked here from Harvard Square, further than I thought it would be, so I got here with an appetite. The top floor showed no signs of my friends who I had just spoke with on the phone, so I was relieved when the hostess informed me of the downstairs section. Several tables as well as a bar in this dark downstairs dining area. It was very crowded, but the staff did a pretty good job of keeping up with the orders. Mikkeller, Pretty Things, Opa Opa, Mayflower and several others were available on draft in addition to some bottles. BBQ was on point and was filling. We walked away with a pretty good sized check, but had a fun time.

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Photo of bierschmecktgut
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Place was packed - a good sign. We stood at the bar in the basement, then sat fairly quickly at the table behind us.

Quality was like most other bbq joints, food and drink menu was borderline overwhelming.

Our host/waiter, Mike was fantastic. Let me sample some beer before I chose. Food came out super fast. Wait staff was buzzing around and knew everything off the top of their head.

The beer menu was great, most beer was on tap, a cask was tapped and plenty of bottle conditioned. Styles ranged from US craft to good Euro imports.

Food was plentiful and tasty, bbq never disappoints. Dessert was fresh, maybe homemade.

Based on your size beer you may pay a bit, the food was priced reasonably. Will definitely go back for beer selection.

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Photo of celticfutblclub
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

im a big fan of redbones. its not just because davis square is fairly short on good places to drink but also because they not only have an amazing tap list thats constantly changing but the food is really good and you get a lot for your money's worth.

the atmosphere is good the place is usually packed which can be overwhelming as its fairly small. the upstairs bar has the best feel i think. old wood dominating the scene with tvs in the corners if thats your thing.

the tap selection is great with 25 or so taps at any given point and they seem to constantly change the taps (i was there twice one day and within the 4 hours since my first visit about 4 beers had changed on the list.

the staff are friendly and very helpful if you need any help deciding what you want (or you can just spin the big wheel which is another way of deciding on what you want)

they nail barbecue at this place. the prices are very reasonable given how much food you get.

pricing on beers can get a bit steep but no more so then other places that have beers on tap that you can only get in a few places around boston.

overall a super place and quickly become a favorite of mine

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Photo of sjverla
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

So I've been hear a few times, and have never been disappointed. The food always kicks ass, and the beer selection is surprising, especially considering the smallness of the place. They have various options, regardless of your preference. The staff is attentive, but unmistakeably disinterested, which I like. They check in and float around, but are laid back and don't hover. Ever. If you go on a busy night, you might end up getting seated cafeteria-style, elbow to elbow with strangers. This happened to my girlfriend and me once, and it was actually a lot of fun.

We were there for lunch today, and boy, lunch there is the best thing ever. Order the combo, and for $8.99 you get pounds of ribs, chicken, and sides.

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Photo of fitzy84
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

Met up with some friends at this place for lunch. Sat the bar first which is on the side. Really friendly staff and a large selection on tap. The bar might not look big, but there were at least a dozen stools, some stools facing the wall, and a table at the window. Sat down to eat in a very crowded and loud dining area. Although I could barely hear anyone, I felt it still had a charm I usually see at many barbecue restaurants. I was really impressed by the attentiveness of the dining room staff as well in such a busy and noisy place. The food was incredible and some of the most reasonably priced barbecue food I have seen, especially for that area. Beer selection was great and unique. I had Allagash White, Opa-Opa IPA, and Tuckerman's Pale Ale while I was there. Noticed they had Rogue Old Crustacean. Overall, if I lived in Davis Square, this would be the place for me.

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Photo of rowingbrewer
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

this is a really good barbeque joint right off the red line.

the beer is always fresh, as they have constantly rotating taps, with about 20 or so beers to choose from at any given time, with most of them being really good crafts.

the service is great, and the atmostphere is pretty good, the place is not fancy, the tables are plain as are the chairs, not table clothes or cloth napkins, just really good bbq.

and the prices are really good for the food, the beer is starting to get a little bit expensive. if you are ever in the area and you are looking for a new place to try this place should definitely be at the top of your list.

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Photo of Goldorak
4.18/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Finally got to check this place out with YouBrewIDrink on our way to the NotF 2010. Thank goodness I had a GPS because I probably would never have found the place. Being on a little street did have one advantage, we scored a parking spot right in front on a Friday at lunchtime.

The place is split in three, with the bar section to the left, a more family-style eatery on the right and another downstairs which I didn't visit. There was a lineup for the restaurant side, but we got a few spots at the bar.

Seems like a nice locals' hangout, obviously with full Red Sox nation regalia everywhere. The vibe was really laid back, not divey enough to scare off someone like my wife, but worked in enough to make me feel at home.

Very interesting tap list that would have kept me occuppied for a nice long session, but it wasn't in the cards this time so I went with a pint of cask-conditionned Larry which tasted fine.

Service was exactly what you'd expect from this type of bar. Our waitress was a little swamped for Beer service, but a little friendly banter fixed that up nicely. Food service was lightning quick though. We got litterally a ton of food at very reasonable prices, and I love BBQ served with good Beer so this place had win all over it. Even though I built this place up in my mind for years, it didn't dissapoint in the least.

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Photo of FrankLloydMike
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Redbones is a place I don't consider often enough. Cask ales, rotating local beers, really cool tap handles (upstairs at least), great service, good food, a nice atmosphere, and the option to get half pints all make it a great place to grab a beer. If I lived in Davis or Porter, I could see this becoming a regular haunt, but as it is the overcrowding and relative distance makes it more of an occasional stop for me.

I prefer the upstairs bar, though the downstairs has been growing on me, and due to how crowded it gets upstairs is where I usually end up. Still, I really love the upstairs--the feeling of walking into a small lodge-style bar, something that reminds me of the dwindling private drinking clubs of Somerville, Cambridge and Manchester. Of course, mine is a romanticized version of these clubs where there is ample good beer, no haze of smoke, and a good degree less alcoholism among the clientele. And with beautiful tap handles. The downstairs is a completely different world--dark, cool, the ultimate rib joint with a decent bar tucked into the corner. It gets crowded down here, too, but there's more room to maneuver.

I love that Redbones has a good local focus in addition to serving many great non-local beers, like the wonderful Ridgeway IPA I had recently. Lots of good Smuttynose Big Beer, Berkshire, Opa Opa, Pretty Things and Cape Ann are often among the many excellent local breweries featured. The food speaks for itself, and the availability of small bites at the bar is a big bonus.

I was torn on calling this place a bit pricey or reasonable. Like I said, I love that there's an option between multiple pour sizes, so you can try more beers or wade into a pricier one. I also love the sampler palette option. Many beers are reasonably priced, but a lot of the specialties are a bit pricier than I'd prefer or expect. Then again, the pours are generous... I recently had a Smuttynose Really Old Brown Dog, which was delicious, potent and pricey at $8 (I didn't consult the printed menu for the price), but at least it was served in a full 16 oz pint, which is unusual for such a high ABV beer. So you see I'm torn on the price, but the bottom line is while it can be a bit pricey, there are plenty of reasonably priced beers to choose from as well.

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Photo of BeerSox
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Located very close to the Davis square stop.

There is an upstairs and down. The down has tables and a bar, where you can wait during busy periods. This place seems to get very crowded very quickly.

The beer selection is great, with a good mix of local and foreign beers. There is a cask and plenty of option on tap, along with a bottled list.

The BBQ food is great, and they have vegetarian options as well.

The walls are well decorated, giving the place a lively feel.

Good beer and BBQ - there's something for everyone. I feel I'll be going back there at some point.

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Photo of DrJay
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I've been here quite a few times now, but always for lunch. Other reviewers have scared me away from trying to come here later in the evening due to the apparent crowds. Lunch is a different matter and I've been able to bring the family, including a preschooler, without any trouble. Roughly 20 taps, nice mix of locals, US craft, and European brews. Cask has been available during a couple of my visits too. The BBQ is solid and the portions are ridiculous. My current favourite lunch deal is the combo - a big bowl filled with a seemingly random selection of whatever BBQ they've got in the kitchen for $9. Plus a whole plate of sides. Prices on food and drink are reasonable and I've always had good service here. Recommended.

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Photo of TommyW
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5

Went here for lunch the other day. Atmosphere of the place is busy yet not overly loud or annoying; has some sit-down seating but I chose to sit at the bar.

They have about 20 beer on tap, plus a cask and a decent bottle selection. Turnover on the taps seems pretty high, so everything seemed pretty fresh to me. I got to try Cisco IPA on cask which was a nice treat.

The service was good. Food came out pretty fast. The guy working the bar seemed kinda new, but he was able to answer all my questions about the beer and food.

The food, by the way, is incredible. Some of the best bbq I've had in a while. Everything is reasonably priced as well: the beer and the food. Although for lunch, the food deal are really inexpensive for the amount and quality of food you get.

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Photo of smcolw
3.7/5  rDev -11.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3

I have been to Redbones three times and each time I've been underwhelmed when compared to other rib joints around Boston. Redbones is reputed to be the very best, but every time, I've received overcooked ribs that are dried out and burnt on the outside.

The beer selection is extensive, even featuring a cask-conditioned choice. There are a few macros, but the menu is geared to beer connoisseurs with a good variety of IPA's and Belgians and a smattering of others. Each time, I received a fresh beer with the proper glass.

I have found the service to be uniformly friendly and efficient.

So, in a nutshell, the beer is good to excellent, the food is over-stated and the service is good.

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Photo of DNICE555
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I actually visted this place in October a couple days before Halloween on my way up to Salem,MA. Before I even walked in I noticed a red truck with some dummies set up in for Halloween... I love it. The service was decent. Nobody was overly friendly. The selection was pretty good. A nice chalkboard list of taps including a cask. I really liked that you could get a sampler which contains 5 samples. I love this especially in a bar with so many choices. I believe it was only about 8 dollars too. A good BBQ spot for food.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.83/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

A packed 2 level restaurant with 2 bars (upper/lower). Alot of seating, but fills very fast, particularly on the weekend. Loud, busy, and packed in. Downstairs has funky decor and is a bit more manageable.

Good tap and bottle selection, from some higher end brews to PBR to Bud. They are frequently out of some beers, but you can always find something you'd like. Some oddities present as well, which is fun. Food and brew were decent and nothing was really off.

Busy busy. Waitress was cool and understandably distracted, but we still got our food and beverages without too much of a wait. Refills? A little tougher, but you can elbow your way to the bar too. Bartenders aren't much for chit-chat, but neither am I.

Food is good BBQ, but far from great. Some things are better than others, but overall, a decent meal (c'mon, this is New England barbeque, not North Carolina).

Noth the cheapest place either. Drafts and bottles are on the higher end, and the food, while alot of it, isn't cheap.

Overall, a decent place. Much more fun, funny enough, when things are a bit less busy.

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Photo of Jayli
3.98/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I hadn't been to RedBones in roughly 10 years, so thanks to Tigg924 for reintroducing me to this place.
Hit this place up on a Wednesday night around 6pm. It's a good thing that we got there when we did because this place got PACKED real quick! This place is two levels. On the first floor is a bar to your left and a dining area to your right. The dining area upstairs is rather cramped. Downstairs is another dining area that is nicely spread out and another bar. The walls are decorated with cool abstract art.
Service was really nice. Our waitress was on top of things and courteous. She joked around with us. The downside - after we finished our dinner and were ordering more beers, she let us know that unless we were eating more, we would have to go to the bar. Not her fault, but hey - still kinda sucked.
Nice selection of beers here - roughly 25 taps and a cask. Assortment of local, belgian and other craft brews. Between the two of us, we got our hands on 21st Golden Doom, BBC Coffehouse Porter, CBC Darkest Night, Sixpoint Brownstone, Shakespeare Stout, and Pretty Things Jack D'or.
The food here is freaking great. It's not true down south BBQ but hell if it isn't a damn good replica! Pulled chicken was tasty, mac n cheese, beans, and garlic mashed potatoes. Turn around form when we ordered to when we got the food was damn fast too!
Overall, a nice place to pop in and get some good grub, and good beer!

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Parking in Union Square sucks. A lot.

The crowd is a primarily young but fairly diverse mix of hipsters, punkers, and college students. Downstairs has some impressive, colorful artwork of gremlins, pirates, and babies with fire coming out of their asses that some one obviously spent a lot of time on. Your party gets it's own table if you sit down there. Upstairs are long lines of tables in which people you don't know sit next to you. Sometimes that's a fun idea. Other times (true story) you may be sitting next to the guy with whom you got in a fight with over a parking spot outside minutes before and that makes for a really awkward dinner.

The food is good for the area (I like it better than Roadhouse even when Roadhouse still had the smoker) but it's not like anyone from Texas or Tennessee will be impressed. For $8.99 you can get a pulled whatever sandwich with 2 sides and a slice of cornbread--that's not too shabby. For what it's worth the jerk pork is extremely inconsistent and sometimes will fine while other times it will set your mouth on fire.

They have a fairly large taplist (15ish?) and one cask. Despite often having obscure and sometimes rare beers, the drafts aren't very focused and can be unbalanced in favor of certain styles. They do have a good bottle list to make up for any discrepancies however.

While servers aren't uniquely personable or friendly they are very attentive and empty plates are immediately carried away and I've never had an issue with getting what I ordered.

I've been here a few times and the biggest compliment I can give it is the fact that I keep coming back.

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Redbones Barbeque in Somerville, MA
4.18 out of 5 based on 153 ratings.
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