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Restaurant lunch highlights:

ROAD TRIP: Pearl Country Store BBQ

ROAD TRIP: Pearl Country Store BBQ

Comments, BBQ compels GLOB to Micanopy

By Bubba Scott, GLOB Correspondent

Editors Note: Farmer Bubba Scott is a container vegetable farmer. To help support the farm, he is a P.H.D., Professional Home Developer, AKA The House Doctor.

After receiving several comments about how good the barbecue is at Pearl Country Store and Barbecue in Micanopy on US 441, GLOB Editor Mike Sanford and I decided to visit Micanopy and see for ourselves how good this 'cued meat really is.

Our journey took us to Pearl's in front of a looming rain storm as we discussed what exactly makes good BBQ. I explained to Mike it's plain and simple: Good BBQ is meat cooked on an open pit without the sauce. If you have to add sauce to make it moist or kill the taste, it's not BBQ.


PearlesDiningPearl's brings back memories of country stores from the last generation. The dining area in this 'one stop buys everything' store is in the back of the shopping area with neat and tidy tables. There is also a great looking wooden lunch counter that allows excellent conversation on any topic you want to bring up with anyone who will listen. We made the conversation about how a seasoned pit master creates BBQ.

Of course we chose the counter, which gives a great view of food in motion. Prep Cook, Pit Boss Lee White was working on the next day's cooking, which starts for him around 4:00 in the morning. Pit Bull (not the dog) Sharon Hope, the cook, was busy preparing the lunch items for the day's meals, and Sharon the Pit Server made sure we were happy with our lunch.

GLOBers are correct--this is excellent barbecue.

I wanted to give their 'cue a fair assessment so I asked for a sample of what they have for lunch everyday. I'm feeling very smart because I was rewarded with an amazing array of tasty 'cue meat products.



Pearl's served me up some excellent tender, moist, and very tasty ribs. On the side of the ribs I found a nice surprise in the pulled chicken and very good beef brisket piled high begging for barbecue sauce to join their party.

While enjoying my lunch I noticed Sharon putting a now ready-to-eat brisket into the cooler for later. I should've taken that home with me. Pit Boss Lee said Pearl's would be happy to cook your 'cue meat for you, along with their daily meat products, for a small fee.


PearlsBeansExcellent baked beans and creamy, sharp flavored mac 'n cheese rounded out a pefect barbecue lunch. A very special thank you to Janet Tibbits (photo at top), our most knowledgeable server with a very friendly demeanor.


Pearl's has been in business since 2001 and is owned by David and Peggy Carr. If you want to experience good BBQ in a country setting, Pearl Country Store and Barbecue is the place to go. This is real pit BBQ. Not only does Pearl's have great BBQ, but also the atmosphere of a country store and friendly service makes a repeat trip a must.

See you there!

The Pluses and Minuses of Pearl's Country Store and BBQ:

Pearl's Country Store and BBQ + indicators: Authentic, home style, very tasty BBQ in a good 'ol country store setting.

Pearl's Country Store and BBQ - indicators: none noted. I'm going back!

Be the first to offer your GLOB comments, lunch photographs and opinions about Pearl's Country Store & Barbecue. Please identify your opinions with a PLUS SIGN (+) for positive comments, and a MINUS SIGN (-) for your negative comments. - THANKS!

Last modified onFriday, 12 June 2020 06:17


  • Matheson Museum
    Matheson Museum Sunday, 07 June 2015 17:29 Comment Link

    Gainesville's Lunch Out Blog inspired the staff of the Matheson History Museum to take a field trip to Micanopy for some hands-on historical research. New Matheson team member Joanna Grey will write about our Matheson Friday Fun Day explorations of different historic sites in Alachua County. This piece sticks to the killer barbecue available at Pearl Country Store & Barbecue. We apologize in advance for making your mouth water.

  • Wayne Smith
    Wayne Smith Friday, 29 May 2015 16:25 Comment Link

    Pearl serves the best brisket in Florida--rivals Texas.

  • Bubba Scott
    Bubba Scott Friday, 08 August 2014 15:52 Comment Link

    That one trip made me a go-backer several times. Great BBQ. For me, Pearls has to be the best around.

  • Mona
    Mona Friday, 10 February 2012 18:58 Comment Link

    Everything at Pearl's is SO GOOD! The cole slaw has a secret ingredient that I have been trying to figure out what it is for years and can't get anyone at the counter to divulge. I think it is garlic - the green stem part .

  • Tina M
    Tina M Monday, 10 October 2011 13:16 Comment Link

    ++++++ love the Pearl!!!! Been going there for Sunday lunch for several years. RIBS, yum!!!, the Sunday NY Times, and the best collard greens in Alachua county. Folks at the Pearl make the experience worth the drive. Hey, it's not diet food, so a walk around Micanopy, or on La Chua trail on the way back into town is just the ticket.
    I'll say it again, love the Pearl!

  • Tee Lee Wood
    Tee Lee Wood Monday, 10 October 2011 09:55 Comment Link

    I only have one comment: I simply will not eat BBQ anywhere else (at least in our area...Texas is a different conversation.) I mean, why would you?

    If you want to continue to be happy with other Gainesville BBQ, I suggest NOT trying Pearl - all others dim in comparison!

  • Kristin Rossetti
    Kristin Rossetti Monday, 21 March 2011 11:47 Comment Link

    I finally made it to Micanopy's Pearl's Country Store & Barbecue! My husband and I are doing some work down in Cross Creek so we decided to stop at Pearl's for lunch yesterday to finally try their famous BBQ. I tried the pork sandwich and thought it was delicious. It was a slightly different preparation than usual -the pork was chopped into bite- sized pieces rather than shredded, with a bit of bbq sauce drizzled on top. The pork was very moist with just a little bit of fat left on it. It was quite flavorful and tasty. I put extra BBQ sauce on it - a sweet, not vinegary BBQ sauce. My "regular" sandwich was gigantic- I can hardly imagine what the "jumbo" size looked like. It was served on a ho-hum white burger roll with sesame seeds. I ate the sammy with a fork because I didn't want to make a mess. My husband tried the 1/2 chicken dinner and proceeded to eat it while vocalizing little sounds of pleasure. He pronounced it "as good as Terrells (in Gainesville)" but was bummed out because he didn't notice that they had potato salad and cole slaw until after we had ordered. He said he will order that next time instead of the french fries and mac and cheese he chose this time. By the way- the fries were pretty good too- crinkle cut with seasoned salt. The mac and cheese, as usual at a BBQ joint, was kinda dry and nothing special. We went for a late lunch on a Sunday and there was a small crowd, but service was quick and friendly. We will be back soon- next I need to try the beef. Mmmmmm.......

  • Jim Barborak
    Jim Barborak Wednesday, 29 September 2010 17:02 Comment Link

    What I most like, besides the excellent food, is the ambience created by the eclectic mix of clients. Camo-clad duck hunters and bass fishermen mix with Gainesville road cyclists, birdwatchers visiting nearby Paynes Prairie Preserve, U. Florida intellectuals browsing the great collection of Florida books, and shoppers from near and far that flock to Micanopy for its great antique stores.

  • NSanders
    NSanders Tuesday, 28 September 2010 15:45 Comment Link

    Pearl BBQ is awesome. They have the best pancakes around. They are bigger than your plate and very reasonably priced. They have blueberry, chocolate chip or plain. Chocolate chip is my favorite. I also love their pulled brisket. What a great little BBQ place. Check it out, you will enjoy too.

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