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28 February 2010

Refined bbq with a flair

Freshman Anna Mak eats nacho onion rings at Smoke'T which recently opened on US1. Cayla Nimmo // The Miami Hurricane

When JJ’s American Diner vacated its spot on U.S. 1 this past fall, the police raids and mediocre food that defined the restaurant became a part of Coral Gables and UM history. In its place, the staff at Town Kitchen and Bar, a local Gables favorite, decided to try its hand at barbecue by opening Smoke’t Southern Kitchen and Tap, and the results are both southern and scrumptious.

Smoke’t fuses creativity with southern culture in a menu that boasts intriguing appetizers and an outstanding beer list. Some of the highlights include “Redneck Rolls,” BBQ-themed sushi (beef brisket, smoked catfish, etc.) that comes prepared with dipping sauce (spicy rather than soy) and chopsticks. Onion ring nachos, loaded with pulled pork, melted cheese and jalapenos, are another wild and delicious invention.

While the side dishes and appetizers ooze creativity and flavor, the entrée options are much more standard affairs. Racks of Kansas City-style wet ribs and St. Louis spare ribs highlight the pit barbecue menu and typical options like pulled pork and brisket line the sandwich menu. For those looking to eat healthy, the aptly named “Ruffage” menu has a surprising variety of salads.

While the prices are a bit high, both the service and the quality of food make a trip to Smoke’t well worth it.

Smoke’t Southern Kitchen and Tap

Where: 1450 S. Dixie Hwy.

Lunch: Mon.-Sun.: 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.BBQ

Dinner: Sun.-Tues.: 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m., Wed.-Sat.: 5:30 p.m.-11 p.m.

Price: Lunch: $10-$20, Dinner: $15-25

Camron Ghorbi may be contacted at cghorbi@themiamihurricane.com.

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