My Barbeque Love Letter to Southern Soul BBQ on St. Simons Island


Best. Ribs. EVER!

We could stop there, but even those superlatives don’t fully describe how much we enjoyed Southern Soul Barbeque, a local joint on St. Simons Island operating out of a former gas station.

Honestly, I had serious doubts when Southern Living ranked it as the best BBQ in the Southeast. I mean, of all the BBQ joints in all the states, would the best really be located in a resort beach town on Georgia's east coast? C'mon man.

Then I ate their ribs! If angels cook ribs with clouds of blessed smoke in heaven, this is what they will taste like! A sugary, smoky, crisp pork flavor topped with any of several available sauces. I found the hot Georgia Soul the perfect saucy match for my devilishly-hot culinary preference.

If angels cook ribs with clouds of blessed smoke in heaven, this is what they will taste like!

I have a firm rule that I NEVER eat twice in the same restaurant when on a vacation get-away. There simply are too many options to do that. But Southern Soul Barbeque made me break that long-standing rule. During our week-long visit to St. Simons, we ate lunch at Southern Soul twice (arriving early to beat the crowds!), ordered extra ribs to-go for a relaxing Fourth of July vacation home meal, PLUS purchased their take-home seasonings. Look, if you're going to break a rule, go BIG!

While I could go on and on and on about the ribs, there's lots of great food to be had at Southern Soul. My go-to side dish is Southern fried okra, and mine were crisply fried and delightfully flavored once I added a little extra special seasoning. Then, I sampled some of my family's pulled pork and baked beans. DITTO on flavor and yumminess.

Sipping on a variety of draft beers sitting at outdoor picnic tables under the pump awning at the former gas station, I even tried the cole slaw, which is admittedly not my favorite item. But here, I'd order it again.

Here are our four best tips for a meal at Southern Soul:

  1. YES! Just go. Don't hesitate. Order anything. It will be good or GREAT!
  2. Avoid peak periods. We went at 11 am for lunch after an early day of hiking and biking. It can be very crowded, with long waits.
  3. Settle in. If you visit during non-peak, find an outdoor seat, order up a few brews, and enjoy your 'que while watching the locals, tourists and world go by.
  4. Order take-home early. You'll have to pick a time for your take-home, and they often sell out of some offerings. So call early.

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Welcome to I'm DeanLand, a trained journalist and retired global marketing executive. Living in Northwest Georgia, I write about about avocations including outdoors, travel, exploration, history, food and community passions. I've traveled to 47 states and nearly as many countries. My French Cajun upbringing in Louisiana plus my extended restaurant-related career affirm my status as an over-qualified eater. At my blog,, I offer a complete menu of our my own experiences, explorations and adventures, organized by geography and always sprinkled with some spicy, tasty tidbits and food notes.

Acworth, GA

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