Review of Smokey Joe Guildford
Part of my problem being such a BBQ nerd is that I can have pretty high expectations of what is classed as BBQ. I’ve been fortunate to have been a judge at Grillstock, and have tasted some of the best BBQ in the UK. There are many BBQ smokehouses opening on the tide of BBQ hitting our shores. There are some good places, and some not so good.
BBQ has some pretty rigid rules if you are going to go down the authentic U.S. BBQ route, then certain things will be expected. Smokey Joe in Guildford has just opened, and I visited on it’s first weekend. A few things on the menu jumped out at me as a bit odd on the brisket menu item that I’d settled on trying. Firstly that it was brined…usually a brisket is brined for salt beef and pastrami…the second was that it was smoked for 18 hours. When I smoke a brisket it’s usually for 4/5 hours at the most, so it seemed odd to me why you would need to smoke a brisket for 18 hours. But if a place is serving authentic brisket…then I want to try it….
Sadly I was a bit disappointed…good authentic smoked brisket should in my mind be served in pencil thick slices, not pulled, there are far better beef cuts to be smoked and pulled such as chuck, brisket tends towards dryness and stringyness when pulled, and that was the case here. BBQ sauce drizzled over the top helped matters slightly. I was hungry so did eat it, but it could and should be better if it is to be called authentic, I couldn’t really taste the 18 hours of smoke though which was odd…
The fries were good, the mac’n’cheese reasonable, the ambience was lovely, a beautiful courtyard I’d be quite happy to chill in for a sunny afternoon. They also do delivery and takeway.
I hope that these guys discover how to smoke and serve brisket the right way, and I’d like to visit again when they have settled down. But in the meantime have a look at the live video I took whilst there…
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