With trips to the excellent Reekie’s Smokehouse now firmly a part of our regular cricuit, I quite enjoy trying barbecue places in other cities to see how they compare. In that regard, we’ve visited Smoak and Adelphi Kitchen, quite recently. To that number we can now add Smoke Barbecue on Glasgow’s West Regent Street.
Upon crossing the threshold, the first thing that struck me was the smoky aroma which was promising. It’s a big barn of a place and feels rather too clean and styled for a BBQ joint. Their “have a nice day” service feels too much like American fast food chain rather than down-home pit barbecue, so this seems another misjudgement to me.
At lunchtime they offer the full BBQ selection as well as an abbreviated lunch menu. I opted for a mix and match of both with the brisket “butty” (a sandwich term reflecting their origins in Leeds and Sheffield) from the lunch menu and a side of mac n cheese from the main menu. The sandwich came with fries.
Things promptly arrived looking rather more refined than I’d hoped. I ate the sandwich without a single drip on tie or shirt which reflected that it was rather light on moisture and again just felt rather too polite. The beef had a light smoky flavour but lacked a really convincing punch.
The mac n cheese was decent. The twice cooked chips needed another go in the fryer as they were soggy and lacked crispness.
So overall, Smoke Barbecue seems pitched a little wide of the mark to me. Their food is fine and likely to suit you if you’re looking for a quick and hearty bite, but it lacks charm. The setting is pretty soulless, too. Everything just needs to be a bit grimier and/or delivered with more swagger. For now, it’s just a little too meek to be memorable.
Blythe scores Smoke
3/5 for food
3/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for setting
3/5 for service
giving an overall 12.5/20
I ate: brisket sandwich, macaroni cheese, fries
I drank: water
I wore: www.tieclub.co.uk tie
Total bill: £11
Address: 2 West Regent Street, Glasgow, G2 1RW