Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Dine Around and Stay in Town 2014 - Smoken Bones Cookshack

Smoken Bones Cookshack on Urbanspoon Smoken Bones is a rather large restaurant that apparently specializes in BBQ meats. Nevertheless it has a fairly substantial menu of choices. Decor is simple and spacious and has televisions. The only thing to watch out for is the location of the washrooms. Large signs attempt to point you past the passage to the kitchen, but because these signs are both to the left and right of that corridor, sometimes people see only the one that points right at the corridor.

Various condiments are available. The house blend of spices is pretty decent -- not too salty, and it actually has a slight sweetness to it.

Strangely, they did not provide a change of utensils between appetizer and main.

$20 Dine Around Menu

1st Course

Smoked tomato soup with creme fraiche
or
Beet salad with Salt Spring Island Goat Cheese

Main

Flame-grilled pork buckeye with reduced demi and oven-roasted vegetables
or
Pork belly & beef meatloaf with a potato croquette

Dessert

Bread pudding with honey caramel
or
Bacon ice cream with bourbon whip cream

I opted for the Dine Around menu while my dining companion chose from the regular menu. My Dine Around menu choices added up to a really decent-sized meal for $20, in part because of the chunks of beet in the salads, and the generous amount of meat in the main.

Fried Pickles ($8)
  • These came hot. Each was about the size of a hot dog sausage and even so was only one quarter of a pickle (cut lengthwise).
  • Although there was a good volume of pickles, it still felt a bit steep at $8.
Fried Chicken Waffle Sangy ($12)
  • Two waffles sandwiching a measly two chicken nuggets worth of white breast meat. Comes with token salad.
  • At least it's real chicken meat instead of some wooden-tasting mash, which is typically what you get when you buy chicken nuggets in the supermarket.
  • Dry waffles. Not enough chicken. This was terrible. Not even hot sauce or house-blend condiment could save this.
Beet salad with Salt Spring Island Goat Cheese
  • This was a simple and quite refreshing salad mainly made up of chunks of not-too-sweet beets. It looked like a smallish portion of salad, but the beets made up for it.
Pork belly & beef meatloaf with a potato croquette
  • The single potato croquette, about the size of a ping pong ball, was simple and tasty.
  • Came with token beet salad.
  • The meatloaf came in two chunks, each about the size of a hockey puck or can of tuna. It was pretty much a solid chunk of meat and therefore very filling. Sadly lacking in BBQ sauce, however, but more was available for the asking from the kitchen.
  • Overall pretty decent, but unlikely to really showcase what they can do with the BBQ. Nothing really "wow" here except portion for price.
Bacon Ice Cream with Bourbon Whip Cream
  • I was initially drawn to this menu because of the bacon ice cream. However, if you look at the regular menu closely, the so-called bacon ice cream is really ice cream with candied bacon bits stirred in. Disappointing, but my friend loved it.

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