The slogan at Bubba's Bar 'n' Grill is "Good Simple Food." But don't go looking for the place come feeding time, because you won't find it. Bubba's exists only in cyberspace, and in the kitchen of one Neil "Bubba" Peart, drummer and lyricist for the legendary rock band Rush, and closet chef.
"Cooking a good meal for your family is as satisfying as playing a good show for your audience," says Peart, who emigrated from his native Toronto a decade ago and now lives in Southern California with his wife Carrie and daughter Olivia. Owing to his alter-ego Bubba and his drum tech Lorne Wheaton's nickname Gump, Peart's dressing-room door inevitably bears a "Bubba Gump" sign, furthering the foodie connection.
Although Peart rides his BMW GS tens of thousands of miles from show to show when his band is on tour, he seldom stops for lunch. He might be a Galloping Gourmet, but he's not Feasting on Asphalt. Instead, he prefers to get where he's going and, provided it's not a show day, check in to some family-owned motel (never a faceless corporate chain!) and walk to dinner. He's not above (or below?) dining at a four-star establishment, but more often than not it's some old-timey joint he discovered during his past travels. Someplace like Bubba's Bar 'n' Grill.
A visit to Bubba's begins with clicking on the coffee-stained placemat, ringed by ads for fictitious businesses from his circle of friends. This takes you to a virtual menu, which isn't so much a menu as a cook book. Peart was in his 40s before he learned to fry an egg (he was a latecomer to bikes, too), but has since made up for lost time. Thus there are recipes for everything from fresh-squeezed orange juice to turkey dinner. Chapters on "Tools 'n' Techniques" and "Bubba-Q" (Biker Bubba Cooks with Fire?) will help any aspiring chef elevate his game, and there's even a "Shop" where you can buy Bubba's apparel-because as any musician will tell you, it's all about the merch.
Pop by for a visit soon. Tell 'em the guy from the lawnmower shop sent ya'.
Bubba's Bar 'n' Grill
Verdict 4 out of 5 stars
Because nothing impresses the ladies like a home-cooked meal.