Family Style Barbecue, Competition Inspired & Driven by Craft
By Rob Ainbinder
The idea for Smohk’d, the 165 seat smokehouse restaurant on North Elm Street had been cooking in the heart and mind of Aaron Bray, for 7 years. Bray, who is a marketing consultant for Performance Foodservice, spent his time on the KCBS barbecue competition circuit before the team for Smohk’d formed. “We take pride in being as fresh as possible, hand slicing all orders. We approach barbecue like race car teams, trying to get a little more out of it with each cook. And we wanted to honor the craft of barbecue in everything we do.”, Bray says.
In addition to eight freshly prepared Hickory smoked meats available daily. Smohk’d feature 11 fresh-made sides, desserts and a family-style menu that allows a little bit of everything to be enjoyed with each visit. Completing the “more than just a barbecue restaurant concept” are touches of elegance in the decor as well as 20 TVs, a full bar, a spacious terrace with outdoor seating, and a private meeting room for up to 40 people. All designed to elevate a patron’s dining experience.
Mike Reid, the GM of Smohk’d who spent 12 years at Outback Steakhouse and time at Smokey Bones, says of their brisket, “A lot of people from Texas have been in and say it’s the closest thing to home that they have. We take that (brisket) point. We cube it up and we mix it with our sauces. And we do the burnt ends, which are really good.”
Reid said of their prep and seasoning, “We use around one five-pound box of competition rub a week and all 11 of our meats are cooked on our Southern Pride cooker. For brisket, we start with two to three briskets for lunch that have cooked overnight. And when we come in we put briskets on for dinner service.”
Reid continues, “The reception has been really good. We had a soft opening, which was good because we could perfect the process because it’s a brand new concept. The road being shut down helped give us time to get things ironed out. Any leftover meats are used the next day for our $5 sandwiches or donated to a local charity. This helps us keep our commitment to daily, smoked fresh meat”
The team at Smohk’d were supported during start-up by a consulting pitmaster, Dennis Dowling that worked to train the team prior to opening on cooking all the meats, sides and fresh carving techniques.
403 N Elm St. Greensboro
Mon – Thur: 11a – 9p
Fri – Sun: 11a – 10p
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