Doin’ the Q
From the Summer 2023 Issue
Barbecue is a summer flavor fave
It’s the time of year when people begin to fire up the grill and get out their favorite barbecue recipes, and the smell of hickory- (or apple-, or oak-, or your choice!) smoked goodness will fill the air. But if you’re not up to firing the grill yourself, there are several “ready-made” barbecue options available year-round.
One popular barbecue establishment here in town is SmokeSmith Bar-B-Que, owned and operated by Sean and Katie Smith. SmokeSmith offers five handcrafted barbecue sauces that perfectly complement their food. Their sauces include classic, spicy, honey sweet , mustard-cue, and Carolina vinegar.
“All of our sauces are made from scratch and sweetened with cane sugar, molasses, or honey, not corn syrup,” said Katie.
The mustard ‘cue is new this year, and has been a huge hit. “It’s crisp, tangy, and tart with classic barbecue notes,” said Katie, who adds that it’s her favorite way to complement Smokesmith’s brisket. The Carolina Vinegar—the couple’s take on a pulled pork staple—is a North Carolina-type barbecue, not South.
Sean explains that traditional BBQ cuts are known to be tough when cooked quickly, which is why slow cooking is the best way to prepare them. He added there is no sugar in their rubs and they never add sauce to their pork or brisket unless a customer orders it.
Since opening their food truck in June of 2020, Sean and Katie have grown their business substantially and look forward to expanding to a brick-and-mortar store in the summer of 2023. They will be located at the corner of Boyer and Highway 2 in the building which formerly housed The Longshot.
If you’re up for a drive, check out Hemlocks Old West Texas Barbecue on Highway 2 in Moyie Springs. Everything is homemade, using the freshest ingredients. Texas-born owner Johnney Walker offers a lesson in true Texas barbecue: “Barbecue meats are commonly sold by the pound. Next, side dishes and desserts including slices of white bread, crinkle-cut dill pickle chips, sliced onion, jalapeño, and cornbread are picked up along the line. This style of barbecue emphasizes the meat, so if sauce is available, it is usually considered a side to dip into.”
Want a taste of Texas at the ready without having to frequently make that drive? The restaurant has a large selection of mesquite-smoked, slow-cooked meats that are vacuum sealed for you to take home.
Be sure to check their website at www.hemlockslodging.com. The restaurant opens for the season on Memorial Day, and is open to diners Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. ‘til 7 p.m. or until the meat runs out. Barbecue is offered by the plate, the sandwich, or the pound with all the typical side dishes also on the menu.
Closer to home, Sweet Lou’s, located in Ponderay (with additional locations in Coeur d’Alene and Athol), has had a mouth-watering BBQ chicken sandwich on its menu since it opened 12 years ago.
“You can’t go wrong with bacon, chicken, melted jack cheese, and our house BBQ sauce,” said Meggie Foust who owns Sweet Lou’s with her husband Chad. She suggests adding avocado and dipping the sandwich into Litehouse bleu cheese dressing. “It makes the perfect combination.”
All Sweet Lou’s barbecue sauces are made in-house with recipes created by Chad. In addition to the BBQ chicken sandwich, they serve wings with a choice of sauces that include bourbon BBQ, buffalo, honey sriracha, and their house BBQ. You can also choose from bison or pork ribs smothered in your favorite made-from-scratch sauce. And for those with dietary restrictions, you’ll be happy to know that all of Sweet Lou’s sauces are gluten-free.
For other barbecue options in town, be sure to check out Pack River Store, Felkers Northern Smoke BBQ (now available for catering only), Shilla Korean BBQ with Seoul, and Farmhouse Kitchen BBQ.