No-frills venue serving up Cajun–style fried seafood, BBQ, wings & sides in a humble setting.
Here comes a Yelp cliché… I can’t believe I never wrote a review for Smoque BBQ. Years ago I lived a few blocks away and would order at least twice a month. That was probably my introduction to competition style BBQ. I’m a proud Southsider and grew up eating from the aquarium smokers found at the legendary Lem’s. Although I’m partial to Lem’s and that style, I still appreciate and enjoy competition BBQ. Smoque had a respectable run the best in Chicago for a while. ..until Green Street Smoked Meats hit the scene. Smoque is still top 3 for this style. Their best menu item is the brisket. It’s incredibly moist with beautiful bark. The pork ribs are also tender and seasoned in a way that doesn’t overpower the pork. Many BBQ joints apply too much rub and sauce. That reduces the ribs to being a vehicle for brown sugar, salt, spice and sauce. They offer baby back and spare ribs. Go for the spare ribs. ..no discernible difference in flavor or texture, but they’re meatier. Other random thoughts. ..he mac and cheese is above average. ..the brisket beans are very smokey. ..fries are fresh cut. .. chicken is delicious and the service has always been friendly. If you prefer a sweet flavor profile Smoque isn’t for you. Otherwise I’d say they’re worth a special trip if you’re on the Northside.
I worked with Smoque to cater a backyard rehearsal dinner and was so pleased with their food and service! Peggy, our catering representative, was always responsive and knowledgable with my many questions. We ended up over-ordering (it’s a bad day when you run out of bbq) and really should’ve gone with Peggy’s numbers, so definitely trust their recommendation. The food was extremely well packaged, and came with all the fixings/utensils/etc. we could have wanted – planned very well on their end! The meal was absolutely delicious, brisket and pulled pork went fast. And please do yourself a favor and get the bread pudding, it’s amazing! At the time, they did have a few Covid precautions in place as it pertained to delivery. Originally, we were planning to have someone set up the chaffing dishes and food for us, but that option was still not available at the time of our event. Not a problem though as I very much respected the precautions put in place to protect their staff.
I was so impressed by how many reviews Smoque had that I had to give it a try. Overall, I liked it, but it wasn’t the most amazing bbq I’ve ever had. I do think it hits the spot though so if you are craving standard bbq fare, this is a good place for you. They currently offer curbside pickup with a well-organized waiting lane. You can stay in your car while someone collects the food from inside and brings it to you. It was very efficient and the whole process took maybe 2 minutes. I ordered the sliced brisket platter, which comes with color slaw and 2 sides, as well as 2 dipping sauces. The brisket was extremely tender and had a nice smoky flavor to it. It is also extremely fatty, so if you’re not a fan of that you may want to go for the chopped brisket. I liked the dipping sauces it came with and I thought they enhanced the flavor. The Mac and cheese was my favorite part of the whole meal. It comes with delicious breading on top and a thick, hearty cheese sauce. I liked that the portion wasn’t gigantic but filling at the same time. The cornbread was served warm and also tasted great — it was so warm it crumbled right off the fork. The Cole Slaw was more vinegar-based than Mayo-based. I wish it was a bit creamier, but it complemented the brisket and sides well without being too heavy. I will definitely keep this place in mind if I feel like having standard, straightforward bbq again. It was just what I was looking for!
Everything was good, but I did not realize how fatty bbq brisket was going to be! While I think the cut was a little too fatty for my taste, the flavor was on point. The brisket chili side was actually my favorite. I’d order that again.
Not much can be said that hasn’t already. Smoque is where its at. Unfortunately for my waistline, this location is by my house and their downtown location is by my office, so you can imagine I order this way too much. Sliced brisket is amazing, brisket chili is a great side, and both dessert options (peach cobbler and bread pudding) are wonderful. Bread pudding especially…whew. Also, even though the brisket totally doesn’t need it, the sauces are excellent. If I had a critique, I’m not a huge fan of their cornbread. Its a touch on the dry side for me. But thats why the brisket chili is the side to get :).
Love this place came thru for an order as we were in the area. They offered us a menu and told us to call in our order. After a bit of a wait in the orange cone area we were brought our meal of pulled pork, buns, slaw, Mac n cheese, and brisket beans! All people were wearing masks and were very patient with us as a drive up order. Wish we lived closer, but so happy to have bbq on this hot hot night in the city.
I haven’t been here in years, but I was recently watching an old episode of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives that was all about BBQ, and featured Smoque. My sister who is visiting naturally started craving ribs so we came here. And OMFG! I remembered they were good, but forgot how good. My mother, sister, and I slaughtered our meals. Also, Smoque is doing COVID precautions right. Nobody allowed inside, sectioned curbside pickup, two waiting tents for pickup, cashless, and distanced patio seating. Staff was friendly and owner was on site, up front, with hands on deck. BBQ is heavy eating which is why I don’t do it often, but I’m going to definitely try and start ordering from here more frequently.
We curbside pick uped the BBQ that we ordered last night. Two combination of BBQ and half a smoked chicken cost only around$30.0, very reasonable. BBQ was really smoky and nice flavored.Not salty and really tasty. My partner liked their bbq sauce. Will try another menu soon.
My brother in law introduced me to this spot. We ended up having dinner there for 3 hours and had so much stuff on the menu. Highly recommend this spot.
This restaurant has figured out what works for them and they do it right!! Their food is amazing and the back lot is converted into outdoor dining. I love how everything is already in to go containers so when I don’t finish i pack it up and go. DELICIOUS highly recommended