Alpharetta, Georgia isn’t exactly a food blogger’s destination of choice. Yet, when the day job sends you off to such an exotic place, you make do. And that’s what I did when I made my way to Smokejack, a BBQ that I hoped would represent The South well. Smokejack is located in what can best be described as Alpharetta’s Main Street (because it is), and while all the other restaurants nearby looked good, Smokejack just drew me in.
Fortunately, I was with a fellow BBQ lover and we proceeded to order the biggest platter possible to split. It was called The Jack and came with 1/4 lb. pulled pork, 1/4 lb. burnt ends, 1/4 roasted chicken, 1/4 rack spare ribs, 1/4 rack baby back ribs and 4 sides (I suppose to keep the 4 theme going). We picked Mac and Cheese, Pimento Cheese Grits, Baked Beans with Bacon and Corn Pudding for our sides, because we had no need for greens.
Yet, Smokejack seemed to disagree, because when The Jack arrived, it cam with a boatload of pickles tossed in one corner. I did my best to ignore these as I dug into the meat. While each item seemed to borrow BBQ styles from other places, they were all great. The Memphis-style spare ribs were fantastic, as were the baby back ribs. The burnt ends probably could have been a bit more tender, and the pulled pork could have used more flavor, but then again the rubs were so great on the ribs that the pulled pork probably would have tasted better on its own. The chicken was even pretty good, and super juicy.
As for the sides, I was pleased with all of them. The baked beans did not fall into the nasty habit of being overly sweet and the mac and cheese didn’t amaze, but still tasted solid. The pimento grits were probably my favorites, being creamy, textured and flavorful.
I left Smokejack packed to the brim, and happy with the quality as well. Atlanta locals may not think Alpharetta has good BBQ, but this transplanted Los Angeleno was impressed.