Well to start off this review I have to say that Richard Park co-owner of Cathead’s BBQ is born on the same Birthday as me, January 10th. I don’t know the year, but the same day will do just fine. What does this tell me? Well it tells me that he is a really nice guy, smart, creative and an excellent businessman? With a shared Birthday, in my eyes he can do no wrong. And Cathead’s BBQ is real proof of that. It is just the most unique, best tasting BBQ you will ever have.
Richards’s roots are planted deep in Tennessee and with every bite you can almost feel the cool breezes back home in the flavors from his neck of the woods. They serve good country cooking and BBQ and use fresh ingredients from family recipes with love sprinkled into the mix. It’s an unbeatable combination with his wife as the pit master and all recipes made from scratch. I’m talking old generational recipes handed down; in my book nothing is better than that!
Richard calls his wife his blonde haired beauty, but Pam is much more then that. She is quiet, but you can tell that she rules the roost both at home and Cathead’s BBQ. The couple met in culinary school, and both came from rural backgrounds where the whole garden to table style of eating played a big part in their lives.
Cathead’s BBQ was formed in 2008 and their vision for the restaurant is to keep those deep-rooted traditions, recipes, and ideas from their childhood alive but with a fresh twist. That was so successful that by 2012 Pam and Richard took over a San Francisco BBQ landmark, Big Nate’s and if that wasn’t enough, they got married later that year to.
It’s word of mouth as far as people finding out about Cathead’s, which is good cause it keeps getting busier every year. They had 6 staff when they stared, now they have 18. Their customers are neighborhood folks and tech people, with a Zinga is opening up right down the street. Adding to this down home vibe they play old trucker type country western music…perfect!
Their BBQ pits were grandfathered in, and would be very hard to build now. They were installed right after the 1989 earthquake and would be impossible to move to another place. For you animal lovers not to worry, there are no cat’s involved here, the name Cathead’s comes from a cathead’s biscuit, which is a buttermilk biscuit as big as a cat’s head, it’s a Southern thing Yall!
Here’s what I tried:
They only serve house wines red & white but have a nice craft beer list, and the great sweet tea is something you have to try.
Slow Smoked Pork Shoulder, delicious flavors in this dish, a real winner.
Sweet Tea Chicken, probably one of my favorite BBQ chicken dishes ever. The sauce is also to die for.
Coca-Cola Smoked Brisket, nice bark and great smoked flavor.
St Louis Cut Ribs, these ribs are what you for sure want to order, in all of their meaty goodness, they are the most tender ribs ever.
Scalloped Sweet Potato’s, these potatoes are something else; it is really a game changer. Sweet potatoes are not usually an ingredient here with a scalloped potato dish, but this really works.
BBQ Baked Beans, what you would expect but just with a little more love added in.
Collard Greens, very southern and cooked the with nice seasonings.
Mustard Slaw, kind of tangy but really fantastic.
Mini Cathead Biscuits. Just dip these little wonders’ in all of the sauces.
Chef Richard Park:
Richard was born and raised in Cleveland, Tennessee, into a family that is deeply rooted in southern traditions, one of those being food. He has many memories of his mamaw making biscuits and gravy after church on Sundays, or going to the many BBQ’s and potlucks at his Aunt and Uncles. These are the foundations on which he has based his passion for food. In December of 1995 Richard moved from Cleveland to the Bay Area to explore life away from the South. He bought his first BBQ smoker in 2002 with dreams of owning his own business. After practicing for months and months, Richard decided to take his passion to the next level and enrolled in culinary school. He yearned for the education that would ready him for his dream. Upon graduating, Richard worked doing catering and in various fine dining, casual restaurants. He participated in the Food Network’s show “Chopped”, his episode was called “Grilltastic”.
Chef Pamela Schafer:
Pam was born and raised in rural Michigan. Year after year she helped her family plant gardens with many fruits and vegetables that they preserved for the winters. They also raised animals, including cattle, pigs, and chickens. This lifestyle inspired her to pursue her dream of becoming a chef. In 2004, after working in state government for ten years, Pam moved to San Francisco and entered a culinary arts program. She began working as a prep cook at Ella’s restaurant. She was excited to work in energetic, creative kitchens where she could share her passion for food with others and learn more about organic foods and seasonal ingredients. Pam later continued her work at San Francisco restaurants, including Acquerello, Incanto, Ducca, and Cane Rosso. At each restaurant she had the opportunity to learn and grow from some of the most prestigious chefs in the city.
I just loved their food and their concept of giving the customer “a lot of bang for your buck”. It is just great over the top BBQ, with all the bells and whistles. Look out San Francisco, Cathead’s BBQ is here to stay!
1665 Folsom St.
San Francisco, CA
Phone: (415) 861-4242
*note: some content taken directly from restaurant website.