February 2014 - Smokey's BBQ Shack, Morrisville Smokey's
isn't on any of my best-of lists, but I decided to try them anyway. I had several reasons, the place had "the look" of a decent Que-place, it had very good online ratings, and it is within convenient driving distance from my apartment. It also gave me a chance to compare an "unranked" BBQ pit to those in the Sweet 16 and Elite 8 of Carolina Que.
I ordered a 2-meat platter (pulled pork and sliced brisket) which came with 2-sides and hush puppies. My first bite was a hush puppy, it was cold. That
may have been was definitely
the high point of my meal.
The pork had a roasted pork flavor and no noticeable smoke. It was not very moist, so I added the vinegar-based sauce.
The slaw was very plain tasting, so I added the vinegar based sauce to that, too.
That vinegar-based sauce was not typical of anything I've had in North Carolina. It was more like a K.C. style sauce with vinegar added. It did not taste right.
I did not like the Brunswick Stew. I could have added that vinegar-based sauce, but I think the vinegar-based sauce was the main seasoning they used in the stew. The brunswick stew had a "sharp" flavor that I did not like. I tossed out almost the entire cup.
I ordered the sliced brisket based on an Urbanspoon review from a Texan that gave the brisket great praise. For me, not so much praise. Let me put it this way, for barbecue brisket, it made great jerky. The brisket must have spent the entire day under a heat lamp, it was the opposite of excellent. I added the other sauce, which tasted okay. I choked it all down.
Despite my less than exceptional dining experience, I am glad I tried Smokey's. I had been to so many barbecue restaurants in North Carolina that I thought were great, that I thought that I may have lowered my standards. I hadn't. Stephenson's
, Little Richard's
, Short Sugar's
, and Allen & Sons
really are excellent. Smokey's
put them in perspective for me. Smokey's doesn't make the tourney, they aren't even an ACC also-ran.
I also learned to trust my lists. And to hold the online reviews at Urban-yelp-advisors in utter contempt.
<message edited by JRPfeff on Sat, 02/15/14 9:25 PM>