I had to travel through Florida recently on a sales trip. I had to hit several different Central Florida cities and towns. Anyone that knows me, knows I’m a food addict. I love trying new foods and new restaurants, so I seek those out from the advice of those that know. A friend of mine from Ocala, Annie Pearce, who runs Seek Easy Online Marketing, told me the best place for food in Ocala is a little place called Big Lee’s.
I was a little surprised when after navigation told me to pull into a lot with a trailer parked on it. I was expecting a restaurant – you know, a place to metaphorically (and literally – if allowed) raise my feet, cool off, and relax. I did not expect a poor man’s food truck. This did not bode well for me. I even started to get a little angry at Annie. I thought maybe she was pulling my leg. This would not have been the first time she had pranked me. I got in line behind a couple of people and patiently waited to place my order.
To make sure I wasn’t getting pranked I asked the older couple in front of me if this place was any good? They looked at me like I was an idiot. “You’ve never had Big Lee’s?” They asked, as if it was preposterous that anyone had not tried it. I said, “No, I’m not from here. Someone suggested it to me.”
“Well, you’re in for a treat,” the older man said. “This is the best BBQ I’ve ever had,” the woman said and then added, “And I’m from Texas.”
“What should I get?” I asked.
They seemed confounded. “That’s hard to answer,” the gentleman said. “Everything, and I mean everything on the menu is top notch.”
“Try the sliced Beef sandwich,” the woman said. “For a first timer, I would say that is the way to go,” she said and reassured me by patting my arm.
My mind was made up, I would try the sliced beef sandwich.
“You know you’re really lucky,” the man said.
“How so?” I asked.
“You’re here before they open,” the man said. “The lines can get pretty long and if they sell it, you’re out of luck.”
“How long can the lines get?” I asked.
“I’ve heard people waiting an hour or longer,” the woman said.
“An hour? Just for lunch from a trailer?” I asked. “There’s no way. I would go somewhere else.”
The couple laughed, “You just don’t know,” they said together. “But you will find out soon.”
I ordered my sandwich which took a little longer than expected to prepare, but once I saw it, I knew why. The thing was massive. I almost couldn’t take a bite, but when I did and the savory BBQ sauce hit my taste buds I felt like I entered Nirvana. It’s hard to compare to anything. I’ve had BBQ before, but this was perfection. Watch the video below and tell me your mouth doesn’t start to water. For clarification, the video below does not give the food justice. Also, check out the reviews from trip advisor here.
After I got back home I called Annie to thank her for the recommendation. My mouth watered thinking about it, and I wanted more. I couldn’t wait till my next trip to Central Florida so I could try it again. Heck, I would probably go out of my way so that I could have lunch there everyday. Annie handles Ocala Search Marketing, so I asked her if she approached Big Lee’s for her services. The one downside and slight complaint I had to the place was not having an indoor restaurant. She said no, and explained places like that get their charm because of their set up, and her clients are mostly from referral. If Big Lee’s approached her, she of course would design and implement a marketing plan to bring in more business for them. I told her, I hope they don’t lose any business and feel like they have to close up shop. She replied if she thought that was the case, she would offer her services for free just so her and her family could keep eating there.