Smoke is a new barbecue restaurant that has just opened at the top of West Regent St in Glasgow City centre. It has two other venues in the North West of England and this is their first venture in Scotland. It is an actually wood fired, open pit BBQ inspired by the BBQ restaurants in the states, because, well, they definitely know how to do their big chunks of barbecued meat out there.
It is a huge place and I loved how it was done out. Very modern with nets full of those round paper lights that everyone had in the late 80s early 90s so that they looked like balloons and funky metal lights made out of what looked like washing machine drums. Love that kind of thing.
One of the great things about the size of the place is that it would be awesome for a party with lots of areas where a long table could be put together so that friends or colleagues could get together and share some BBQ platters.
I had initially intended to come with my 21yr old cousin Lyndsey to get the opinion of a funky student type. But sadly she was delayed and couldn’t make it so I took along the guy that has wormed his way in enough now to be given the title Mr F (Mr Foodie).
Our drinks came in these lovely kinda jam jar meets a glass mugs which I really liked, and soon after our yummy dinner arrived, it was a variation on their sharing platter (£30) with the addition of a few other bits and pieces for us to try and we were rightly told “I hope you are hungry.” It was mahoosive. Luckily I had only eaten a banana and a slice of cake all day as various things had meant I didn’t manage to catch either breakfast or lunch. I was looking forward to the challenge. We were also given a sample of three of the beers which Mr F had most of cos we were running late which meant I ended up driving in to the city. I did have a wee taste tho.
The first thing I was drawn to was the cornbread muffin. Just cos it looked so cute on the plate. I have never had cornbread before although I have heard about it lots over in the states. This muffin was delicious, it was really buttery but also sweet with a kick from the jalapeños running through it and a few bits of crunchy sweetcorn too. Loved it, so did Mr F who seemed to demolish more than his share.
Standing out on the plate was the huge turkey leg, so much meat on this it was ridiculous. I found it a little spicier than the other meats but maybe this was just my imagination. Turkey can sometimes be a little dry but this was lovely and had a lovely smokey, spicy coating that you could really tell had been on the BBQ.
The brisket beef was my favourite, smooth slices of meat that didn’t have the slightest bit of chewiness. I scoffed it down with some of the sweet mustard dip which was great. I’m not normally a huge fan of mustard as it can be a bit overpowering but this was lovely sweet and tangy. Loved the brisket!
The smoked pork dog was a barbecued hot dog that was tasty, if slightly greasy, I’m sure it had a slight hint of paprika in the sausage which gave it a slight chorizo like edge. Then there was the smoked chicken thighs, bbq chicken thighs, mmmmm whats not to like. I had mine with a bit of the honey which I wouldn’t have put with BBQ food but went really well.
Now the St Louis pork ribs looked amazing, they were massive and I took great pleasure in picking up a huge hunk of them and ripping the meat off covering my fingers in the sticky sweet smoky BBQ loveliness. They seemed to be the least spicy but I don’t know if this was because I had gotten used to it by that point. They were beautifully cooked and had so much meat on them. My only regret is that I thought that they could have done with some more sauce and I completely failed to register that I should have used some of the massive bottle of BBQ sauce that is provided on every table. The same went for the pulled pork slider, I love my pulled pork really saucy and should have added some more myself. The brioche bun was lovely and the pulled pork was delicious. Always a winner. This was all helped down with some pickled slaw which was fresh and sweet and reduced my guilt in feeling like I was at least eating a vegetable.
Mr F said that the meat had the really charred smokey flavour of a home cooked BBQ and it really shows that its cooked on some proper fire, and you don’t have to wait for the years one day of sunshine to get it in this place.
The lagers we tried were the Freedom Organic (an English lager), Smoke American Red and American Saviour pale ale. My favourite was the American red as it was richer and heavier than the other two. The American Saviour was really light and sweet and summery and would have been lovely to drink in the rare sunshine at the moment. The Freedom Organic was a really light lager and probably would have been what I would have gone for a few years ago when I didn’t really drink lager and found them all a bit heavy.
In the interlude between the meat and the pudding I went the loo. They are unisex but with single sex cubicles. I really liked how they were set up with a bucket as the sink. I kinda wished I had taken my phone in to take a picture of them. I sat back down and listened to another Queen song come on the playlist. Love Queen, had a little quiet sing along to myself.
Pudding arrived and consisted of a chocolate brownie, S’mores, vanilla ice-cream and Daim cheesecake. Now I am a S’mores virgin, but I know they are an American thing and usually have gooey marshmallow toasted on a campfire and chocolate sandwiched between a cookie, this was pretty much inside out with a cookie type centre and the marshmallow on top covered in chocolate sauce. It was nice, I always like a bit of toasted marshmallow. It was some good s**t. The brownie was warm, moist, chewy and rich and what you want from a slab of chocolate cake and was delicious with the really really ridiculously creamy vanilla ice-cream. I mean it was mega creamy. Probably the creamiest vanilla I have had. Top marks for the little unassuming dollop of ice-cream. My mum the vanilla ice-cream queen would definitely approve. Last but by no means least was the Daim cheesecake, yummy thick Daim bar topping then a layer or tangy but thick and rich and creamy cheese cake filling and then biscuit base. This was my favourite. The creamy cheesecake filling was just scrummy.
So in all me and Mr F had a lovely evening and were absolutely stuffed. We left happy and full and with a doggy bag of meaty leftovers that will do me a few other meals. I hope this place does well. I am gutted that I am not around next Thursday 28th April because they are putting on a first come first served free food event and are going to be serving things to the queue out of a VW camper van. That will be so good and would have made for some brilliant pics. Thanks again guys for the evening and good luck!
Foodie x x
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