Frantically pacing down Park Avenue, I was on a mission. I turned the corner and got to 27th street and before I could even pull out my Blackberry for the directions, I knew I had found it. That neon blue “Barbecue” sign hanging off of the building was like a north star leading me to barbecue heaven, or in other words Blue Smoke.
Upon entering the dimly lit fairly spacious restaurant, the overwhelming floor to ceiling windows allow natural light to flow into the restaurant and you are hit with a sudden sense of southern hospitality mixed with a modern metropolitan aura. The bar itself takes up half of the restaurant, with the entire back wall filled with bottles. Their alcohol selection is one of the largest, to the point where it takes up three pages on the menu, while their food options only take up one.
The Blue Smoke Burger (11.95), though simply named, could be a contender for one of the best burgers in the city. It is relatively small but makes up for it through its height. The moist and juicy beef patty, which is perfectly seasoned, is almost as good as the fresh ingredients that come with it. One bite and it leaves your taste buds mesmerized.
Their side dishes are rather impressive and could even be considered meals of their own. The French fries were the perfect balance of crispy and salty while their creamed spinach literally melts in your mouth. What really won my heart was the baked mac and cheese (7.95). Served in a deep dish, it was like a bowl of thick, delicious, melted cheese drenching the macaroni noodles.
The Kansas City Spare Ribs [half rack) 14.95(full rack) 24.95] were another story. “Big, juicy, spicy and sweet, slathered with our KC Sauce” makes them sound utterly delectable on the menu, but in real life they were quite a disappointment. The texture of the ribs was almost rubbery and made it more of a hassle to eat them rather than a pleasure. The specially advertised KC sauce was barely on the ribs at all. Luckily, they keep a variety of extra sauces on the table.
The dessert varied. Some of the amazing types were the apple crisp and the banana cream pie. The apple crisp consisted of glazed baked apples, crispy crust and topped with a scoop of cinnamon ice cream. The banana cream pie tasted incredibly fresh with banana slices and whip cream. Yet, the chocolate mousse cake was dry and grainy tasting and the key lime pie tasted too tart.
All in all if you crave a chill jazz scene with good foods and good friends, Blue Smoke is highly recommended, but ironically enough, don’t count on their barbecue.