I had lunch the other day with my brother, who's a private investigator. We decided to grab some barbecue and headed up to 19th Street to try the 'cue at Gatlin's - which we heard was supposed to be pretty good.
Gatlin's is in an old house near the confluence of 18th, 19th, 20th and Ella. It's a very simple set-up. There are a couple of tables inside and a larger seating area outside under the covered patio. You walk inside up to the counter and place your order. There's a pass through behind the counter where you can watch them pull the meat out of the smokers and slice it up.
I had my usual - brisket and sausage. The lady behind the counter (a very sweet and friendly lady, I might add) asked me if I wanted lean, moist or burnt ends for the my brisket. I told her I'd take all of it along with a side of baked beans.
The sausage was good, but didn't have enough smokiness for my tastes (keeping in mind that I prefer my barbecue dry as opposed to sauced). The brisket, on the other hand, was a disappointment. Most of the meat was moist and fell apart at the touch. The meat had a good smoke ring, however, and a black coating (smoked over pecan, I would guess), but it had very little taste.
A little spice rub would've been nice. Hell, even salt and pepper would've added some flavor to the meat. Good barbecue should have some smokiness to it with a little bit of a kick. The brisket and sausage at Gatlin's had very little of either.