Babe’s Bar-B-Que & Brew House
Babe’s Bar-B-Que & Brewhouse owner Lucky Callender wants a visit to his expansive Rancho Mirage restaurant to be more than a meal. He hopes it’s an experience.
“Everything we do inside this restaurant is all done by hand, from scratch with family recipes from three generations back,” Callender says. Baby-back ribs and pulled pork sandwiches, smoked to perfection, keep barbecue lovers coming back again and again.
The atmosphere helps, too: upscale but comfortable with cheeky touches, including framed, watercolor illustrations of punny “celebrity pigs” by artist Lynn Knowles, who also created a saucy series of beer-label pinup girls for the brand.
Glass walls allow diners a glimpse at the restaurant’s half-million-dollar brewing system; those extra curious about the process can schedule a free brewery tour and get up close and personal with the massive fermenters, where award-winning suds like the Honey Blonde Ale and Blackfin Lager come to life.
“It is a labor of love to make the beer,” Callender notes. Two master brewers do the bulk of the work to produce the restaurant’s substantial yearly quota of beer, and in the interim, they’re busy dreaming up new brews.
The beer lineup is intentionally curated to reflect the menu, and Babe’s is the only brewery in the desert where you can also enjoy a full feast. “When you drink, you’ve got to eat,” Callender quips, comparing the affair to wine tasting and pairing. Wait staff can recommend the best brew to couple with your entrée. “It all comes together and complements the food and the experience as a whole,” Callender says.
Photography by Jaime Kowal