Sticky Lips Pit BBQ

Rochester, New York


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I was actually really disappointed when I went to the Sticky Lips Pit BBQ. I assumed because they had multiple vegetarian items on their menu they would have at least one thing that was vegan or could be veganized.

Unfortunately when I got there, after talking to the kitchen I found out that nothing on the menu was vegan since everything had either butter or eggs in it and couldn't be taken out (the veggies were pre-sauteed and the faux meat was a mix that had eggs).

After working with them, I determined that I could get the tofu steak with just BBQ sauce and no grilled vegetables and a side of french fries. I got my meal and it was small and plain. All it was was a large block of tofu with BBQ sauce on it and a side of fries--which I found out after asking the waiter weren't made in house but were the frozen variety.

About half way through my meal I decided to check out the BBQ sauce (which they had confirmed had no dairy or meat in it) and found out that it had WORCESTERSHIRE SAUCE in it. For those of you that don't know, Worcestershire sauce has anchovies in it. But, because on the ingredient list it only said Worcestershire, I am sure no one thought twice about it NOT even being VEGETARIAN. And, for your strict vegans, it also had honey in it.

Anyway, basically anything on their menu with BBQ sauce in it is NOT VEGETARIAN. They also have no vegan options, unless you count french fries.

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I actually like the bbq tofu - it's different from other ones I've tried, not fried, and pretty saucy. But ask for the tofu to be cubed - otherwise it comes as a slab, and that is not as good for sauce absorption. I've tried other entrees too, and liked them as well. This place stands out for offering so many substantial and good vegan entrees for a barbecue place. They also have several vegan sides, like sweet potato fries and cajun corn. Just make sure to ask them to leave the cornbread off - it's not vegan!

Image for Crystalveg

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I crave the veggie meatloaf every other day!
Stick with that and you'll be good, the tofu products are a bit lacking in taste!

Image for Lola

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I went to Sticky Lips with a few (non-vegetarian) friends. I thought it would be a good option since my friends were not so keen on eating at a strictly vegetarian restaurant, but at the same time there was a separate vegetarian menu and I was intrigued by the idea of vegan BBQ. The food was fairly mediocre. I had BBQ tofu with some vegetable sides, and the tofu did not seem to absorb any of the flavor of the BBQ sauce. My friends were equally dissatisfied with their meals.

There were a few other vegetarian options on the menu which I did not get a chance to try (one of the menu items was even labeled "vegan," although it is possible to get other items made vegan as well). One caveat: I was reading the ingredient lists on the BBQ sauce bottles at our table and only about half of them were vegetarian (the others contain worcestershire sauce, which is made with anchovies).

Overall, I think Sticky Lips was a neat place to try once (the waitstaff was very friendly and fast and the decor was interesting - lots of old newspaper articles from the 40s and 50s covering the walls), but I'm not sure that I would go back there again.

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