Thursday, July 17, 2008

Smoke Joint

No, that is not a suggestion, just the name of a new barbecue place in Brooklyn. And the fact that I am writing about this instead of Rome means that I have not yet recovered the contents of my Lacie Big Disk. If any of you have a suggestion on how to do this, feel free to let me know. I imagine I will have to take it in someplace where they specialize in data recovery.

Anyway, shortly after our return from Europe the Mysterious Chinese Woman and I decided to try out a new restaurant in the Fort Greene area of Brooklyn at 87 Elliott Place. It isn't too far from where we live, kind of in the neighborhood of the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

The Smoke Joint

It is a bit of a hole in the wall, which isn't a bad thing. Gave it kind of a Down South atmosphere. There is a counter above which is the menu and where the cooks dish the plates. After deciding what you want you go to a little window and place your order.

Window Peeping

When your order is ready they call your number and you pick up your food. Very cafeteria style.

Servin' Up The Goods

There is limited space inside, but again, kind of like a typical rib joint you might find somewhere along a road in the South.

Grabbing Grub

There were a few tables up front by the open glass doors where you could watch the passing scene. On a hot sunny day like the day of our visit sitting in the sun wasn't very appealing though.

Roadside Service

They had a small, but interesting assortment of beers available including several Belgian style beers from the Allagash Brewery. I decided to go low-end and had a can of Dales Pale Ale. Well, the price wasn't low end, $4 for a can of beer, whatever the brand, isn't a real bargain.

Bar Man And Dale

Well, if the beer was no bargain, the ribs were a total rip-off. Before trying this place I checked out their website. When you click on the menu this is the picture that they have posted:

From The Smoke Joint Website

This is what we were served when we ordered a whole rack of spare ribs, for which they charge twenty dollars.

No Truth In Advertising

I actually asked if they got our order right, not believing this could be it. Well, it was. And the coleslaw was a double order for which we paid an extra two bucks. To be fair, there were two layers of ribs in that basket, but still, nothing like the picture.

It would be nice to say that the small portion and poor presentation was somehow compensated for by the ribs being delicious. However, that was not the case either. They were tender, I will say that for them, but pretty devoid of any flavor. I have to believe they were cooked in an oven and then crisped up in a broiler. I could detect no smokey flavor at all. Also, if they used any rub on them, which they claim they do, it was not noticeable. Without dousing it with the barbecue sauce that it came with they were completely bland. The coleslaw was also totally bland so it complemented the ribs perfectly.

The best thing about the meal were the Smokey Greens and Macaroni and Cheese at four dollars each. The Smokey Greens were, in fact, quite delicious.

The Side Dishes

In retrospect, ordering the ribs was a big mistake. The sandwiches that were being eaten at the table next to us looked generously portioned and the people eating them said they were very good. Hacked and Stacked pork, beef, and chicken sandwiches went for seven dollars each as did Crispy Catfish Cornmeal Crusted sandwich. They also had Beef Short Ribs for sixteen dollars but I think I would have to see what they looked like before I would order them.

In the final analysis I would have to say I was quite disappointed with our meal. When I go into a barbecue joint and order a rack of ribs I expect to get a full rack served to me. Even more so if that is what they are posting on their website. What I got was more like what I would expect at a drive-in restaurant, and I would expect to pay half the price.

Smoke Joint on Urbanspoon


Kyle said...

Just an FYI, the ribs in the picture from the website are babyback ribs and the ones you ordered were spare ribs. There is a big difference.

Kyle said...

Just an FYI, the ribs in the picture from the website are babyback ribs and the ones you ordered were spare ribs. There is a big difference.

Anonymous said...