Eli’s Barbecue

Elias Leisring started building his pulled pork reputation under canopies at Findlay Market and Fountain Square in 2011. Leisring’s proper little ‘cue shack along the river serves up ribs that are speaking-in-tongues good, some of the zazziest jalapeño cheese grits north of the Mason-Dixon line, and browned mashed potatoes that would make any short order cook diner-proud. The small no-frills restaurant—packed cheek-by-jowl most nights—feels like it’s been there a lifetime, with customers dropping vinyl on the turntable, dogs romping in the side yard, and picnic tables crowded with diners. The hooch is bring-your-own, and the barbecue is bona fide.

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