Restaurant Review: The Smoke Joint (Brooklyn)

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As we are on the cusp of the 2014 Summer Solstice, the nostalgic signs of summer will begin to resonate within our many sensory points. We will begin to hear the all too familiar sounds of music being played in the streets; we will begin to hear the infectious laughter of children running and playing; and of course, we will begin to have our appetites stimulated by the unforgettable smell of BBQ with each gust of a passing wind. Yes, Will Smith said it best when he said “Summer, Summer, Summertime; Time To Sit-back And Unwind”. And if you are like me and live in a seasonal place like that of New York, you begin to realize that summer tends to fly by quicker than a Gypsy Cab trying to beat the clock. It is because of this precious time, that we have to be both cognizant and precise when making sound judgements on where we choose to spend these precious moments at. Well I’m here to give you a GPS coordinate that will, without question, not waste your time and will also satisfy and appease your palate. The address is 87 Elliott Place, Brooklyn N.Y.. The place in question? The Smoke Joint.

Now I’m extremely particular about BBQ food. In fact I am usually so disappointed in the places that I have gone to, to the point where I rarely select it as a cuisine of choice when contemplating dining out. However in this particular instance, my wife and I just so happened to be in the Brooklyn area and the real hunger games were beginning to take place inside our stomachs. We were searching on the internet for a nearby eatery and it just so happened that The Smoke Joint was in our then current proximity. The Smoke Joint was slightly on my radar of places I wanted to try, as I had seen a segment feature on the Food Network channel about the restaurant. Of course due to my apprehension about eating BBQ, I was dangling on the fence as to whether or not we should go. So I did what any smart husband would do and I deferred to my wife and asked her to decide for both us. As it turns out, not only did I marry her for her beauty, but clearly she is also an extremely intelligent woman as well. The food at The Smoke Joint was out-and-out exceptional.

There is nothing fancy about the decor, as it will kind of remind you of a juke-joint that just so happens to sell some tremendous BBQ food. You are greeted by the host and then casually instructed to find any seat that will accommodate your party size. With every step on top of the squeaky wooden floor planks, you will find yourself being mesmerized by the smell of delicious smoked meats. We perused over the menu and decided on our entrees. My wife chose the pulled pork platter and I chose the smoked pulled chicken platter. Our choice for sides were the smoked, meat-less collard greens and the macaroni and cheese. The turn around time in which you receive your food is damn near startling, as we received our plates within five minutes of ordering. Our waiter instructed us on the sauces that were on our table and from there we proceeded to dive right in. The results? Unbelievably savory. I am a collard greens connoisseur and these were by far the best I have ever eaten out. They are spicy, smokey and vinegary to the point that you will find it hard to believe that they are actually meat-less. The macaroni and cheese was spectacular as well and should never have to take a backseat to anyone else’s rendition. So we move on to the stars of the moment, the pulled pork and the smoked pulled chicken. My wife really enjoyed her pulled pork, but her only critique was that of a personal preference which is she prefers leaner cuts as opposed to any fatty parts of the meat. But her overall take was that it was absolutely tremendous. My smoked pulled chicken platter could do no wrong, as it was smokey, peppery and juicy. Once you squeeze one of the available sauces on-top for additional flavor, it adds tranquility to your mouth upon every delectable bite. The Smoke Joint is one of “Brooklyn’s Finest” and if BBQ is calling and you just so happen to be in Kings County, check this place out. It’s located not far from the newly constructed Barclays Center. Trust me when I say that disappointment is not a dish served on their menu. Bon Appetit!

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