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courtesy of Bodean's

Top 5 American Smokehouse Restaurants in London

27 July 2017 Kaysha Woollery

BBQ season is upon us, so of course the heavens have opened. As such, we’re passing on the disposable barbies in the park and getting suited and booted for a proper BBQ restaurant. What better way to enjoy a true smokehouse feast than having it brought to you? Check out our top London spots for the only kind of ribs worth bragging about.

Pitt Cue Co
 
Pitt Cue Co are famous for their meat quality. Back in the day, they started off as a modest food truck on the Southbank before opening up a tiny restaurant in Soho. Now located in the historic Devonshire Square, they boast a changeable menu allowing them to cook only the finest cuts from their daily deliveries. They source top-quality dry-aged produce from butchers and family farmers, as well as rearing their own Cornish mangalitza pigs - known for their distinctively dark, richly-flavoured meat. Early arrival is understandably a must to avoid the disappointment of any dishes running out quickly – especially on Sundays, as their roasts are to die for. Expect a fully-stocked bar overflowing with selected “underdog spirits” to compliment the food. Think bourbon and rye, traditionally made mezcal (including pechuga, ceremonial mezcal distilled with meat), and a wide selection of rums – try their unfiltered Haitian variety, used in voodoo rituals. Plus, their own-brew goes down a treat and the wine list includes a fantastic range of old and new world producers.
 
Pitt Cue Co. can be found at 1 The Avenue, Devonshire Square, EC2M 4YP.


Image courtesy of Pitt Cue Co.

 
Duke’s Brew & Que
 
Duke’s Brew & Que have home cooking down to a fine science. Using special methods from Central Texas, their meat is cooked low and slow to perfection, creating rich, tender ribs and pulled pork. They even use American imported wood smoke for that authentic smokehouse flavour. Everything, from the meat to the rub via the molasses glaze and the all-American smoke, is carefully considered - building layers of flavour for the ultimate taste complexity. Now for the science! Duke’s make sure all of their meat has the bright pink smoke ring that forms under the surface when nitrous oxide from the smoke penetrates the meat and gets absorbed by the meat’s water. Their ribs also feature the Bark: a thick, jerky-like crust that traps moisture and flavour. This is caused by a chemical reaction of amino acids called the Maillard reaction. Duke's love of fine BBQ is also matched by their passion for beer - it's the birthplace of Beavertown Brewery, one of London’s finest craft selections.
 
Duke's Brew & Que can be found at 33 Downham Road, Haggerston, N1 5AA.
 
Bodean’s
 
In 2002, Andre Blais brought tastes from his native Kansas City to the UK, marking the birth of Bodeans. Famous for its slow cooking and secret sauces, Bodean’s is hailed as the home of the “best ribs ever” by Katie, London Calling’s resident rib connoisseur. With over a decade of classic choices including beef brisket, burnt ends, ribs, burgers, pulled pork, hot dogs, and steak all cooked over an oak-burning smoke pit, Bodean’s have well and truly earned their position as the ultimate London flock-spot for authentic American smokehouse dining.
 
Bodean's can be found at multiple locations throughout London.


Image courtesy of Bodean's

 
Blues Kitchen
 
The Guardian once described a night at Blues Kitchen as being “like a prom night meeting a late night drag race.” Not a far off analogy for this Texan BBQ restaurant and blues bar. Their live sessions will have you tapping your feet as you sink your teeth into one of the juiciest, most succulent 16-hour slow-cooked short ribs this side of the Atlantic. They also boast the largest selection of rare and vintage bourbon in city, including a London Calling favourite, Jameson Caskmates. Not bourbon, but a heavenly Irish whisky aged in beer barrels for a deep nose of butterscotch, caramel, and rich coffee notes. Make sure you also check out Blues Kitchen Radio if you want to take home the sounds of the South.
 
Blues Kitchen can be found at multiple locations throughout London.


Image courtesy of Blues Kitchen

 
Big Easy
 
Big Easy is a spot where you go big or go home. Launched on the Kings Road in the nineties, their hearty portions of old fashioned home cooking pay homage to 19th century American BBQ and crab shacks. Big Easy is fantastic for deals, with a daily 'Express Lunch' offer (drink and a main for a tenner) and a different evening offer every day. You no longer have a reason to hate Mondays with the Big Pig Gig: unlimited BBQ for £20 pp. Shrimp Tuesday is the day to live out your Bubba Gump dreams: unlimited deep fried shrimp or southern shrimp boil for £20 pp. Wednesday's unlimited hog roast or chicken wings are £20 pp and Thursday keeps it fancy with an 8oz sirloin steak and half lobster for £24.50. On top of all that, keep your eyes peeled for fresh lobster deals every day, plus unlimited boozy brunches every weekend.
 
Big Easy can be found at multiple locations throughout London.
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