BBQ at The Smoke Joint
I probably should’ve titled this post “Why the hell didn’t I ever think about this before?” But first, some boring back story. I went to a work training in Manhattan the other day and knew I would get out a bit early. Seemed like a good idea to try to go find a hot dog somewhere. I’ve been beating myself up a little recently for not living up to my rep as a guy who supposedly lives on hot dogs for 3 meals a day. The sad truth is I live on a pretty consistent diet of oatmeal and turkey or tuna sandwiches. But once in a while I manage to eat as if I have no standards. Or at least that’s what other people think. So it seemed like the right time to live the HD hunter gatherer I was meant to fulfill.
I had a couple of places in mind for a dog in Manhattan but nothing too crazy. I’m a big fan of unimaginable toppings on hot dogs and these places I was thinking of serve up great but no frills deli dogs and spicy mustard. While I will get to them at some point I’m a little more interested in the exotic. I’ve been meaning to search out a South American dish called solchipapas, which consists of sliced hot dogs on a bed of french fries, and whatever else to choose to put on top. The place I want to try in Brooklyn was out of the way though; I recently saw a cart in front of the subway station selling solchipapas about a week ago but it wasn’t there when I got out this day. I remembered, however, that there was a bbq place a few blocks away and they had a hot dog on the menu. So I figured I would go have a quick bit to eat.
Ft. Greene is a cool, leafy neighborhood in Brooklyn that has a lot of great food. I decided to head up to The Smoke Joint for my dog.
The menu boasts that if you want to have a hot dog you might as well have the best hot dog in Brooklyn. I’m usually dubious of ‘the best’ anything; if it’s the best, people know it’s the best. You don’t have to say that it is. But what’s this? The next line says that if you get the dog, you might as well top it with pulled pork, beef, or chicken. Hellllooooooo!!!!!!
Yes, I’ll have the hot dog with pulled pork, a side of beans, and some spicy french fries please. Then the waitress asks me if i want anything else on the dog. I ask how they like to do it. After being a little flustered by my question, she said that some people like to also get it with cole slaw and spicy mustard. Yeah yeah, that sounds good. I’ll have that.
Black angus hot dog on a split-top bun with spicy mustard, cole slaw, pulled pork, and bbq sauce! What I liked about this dog was that you had different flavors take over with each bite. Sometimes you tasted more dog, others would be more pulled pork and bbq with little hints of mustard and slaw. I was completely stuffed by the end of the meal.
A great meal and I was basically done for the rest of the day. A sloppy-ass hot dog and a Dr. Brown’s cream soda. I’ve been so focused lately on finding hot dog stands or restaurants that I’ve completely forgotten about the fact that other cuisines make interesting HD variations. So I’ve got a short mental list in my head of my upcoming missions, whenever they might be. It runs down like this: solchipapas, deli dogs (eg., Katz’s), Colombian hot dogs, and other restaurant dogs/sausages (like the Fatty Dog at Malaysian-style restaurant Fatty Crab). Mike, there’s got to be a way to make this into a career!
The Smoke Joint 87 South Elliot Place, Brooklyn NY 11217