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Smoke Signals BBQ restaurant

Smoke Signals BBQ restaurant
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  • Smoke Signals BBQ restaurant

    Post #1 - May 1st, 2011, 7:19 pm
    Post #1 - May 1st, 2011, 7:19 pm Post #1 - May 1st, 2011, 7:19 pm
    The GF saw an article about this place in Time Out and so went to the 8 week old Smoke Signals this Friday and sampled a lot of great BBQ.

    Rib Tips, Pork links, and Turkey Tip (smoked turkey thighs). Great BBQ from an acquarium smoker. Really good BBQ sauce not made from mixing a bunch of other sauces together. ZERO Ketchup, ZERO Louisana hot-sauce. The owner/ chef has been doing BBQ for a long time and takes a huge amount of pride in his product, sauce, and new endeavor. Oh yeah, the rice and beans were killer too. Unfortunately, no ribs by the time we got there, but we will be sure to be back to sample them soon.

    Smoke Signals
    7137 S State St
    773-783-1855

    viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9305&p=88209&hilit=smoke+signals#p88209

    http://timeoutchicago.com/restaurants-b ... ke-signals
  • Post #2 - May 2nd, 2011, 11:44 am
    Post #2 - May 2nd, 2011, 11:44 am Post #2 - May 2nd, 2011, 11:44 am
    Looks interesting. With the weather (finally) turning for the better looks like a trip is warranted to see if he can back up the serious smack talk.
    Objects in mirror appear to be losing.
  • Post #3 - May 2nd, 2011, 1:55 pm
    Post #3 - May 2nd, 2011, 1:55 pm Post #3 - May 2nd, 2011, 1:55 pm
    Kman wrote:Looks interesting. With the weather (finally) turning for the better looks like a trip is warranted to see if he can back up the serious smack talk.

    Yes, I was definitely struck by the smack talk...

    in TOC, Heather Shouse wrote:“I’m gonna tell it to you like this,” Ali Lahiani says, speaking from his eight-week-old Park Manor barbecue joint, Smoke Signals. “And this is the honest-to-God truth: These barbecue houses on the South Side are running on reputation. If they have good meat, they have lousy sauce. If they have good sauce, the meat is always tough. Leon’s is dead and gone. Barbara Ann’s is over with. Lem’s used to be okay but the product went south. Uncle John’s is doing real good and I’m happy for him and God bless him if he’s making his money. But he can’t touch me. The people deserve better.”

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #4 - May 3rd, 2011, 10:10 pm
    Post #4 - May 3rd, 2011, 10:10 pm Post #4 - May 3rd, 2011, 10:10 pm
    Image

    Smoke Signals has excellent intentions, but it will take them a few more visits to convince me they can deliver. The wheat bread and colored paper provide a quirky shell for the pitifully tiny tips and links combo ($9), which comes with a side of slaw or potato salad and your choice of a pork, beef, or turkey link. I went with the potato salad (creamy, cold) and the turkey link, which was savory, Moo & Oink or ilk, if dry. The rib tips were petrified and either a holdover or runtime victim, but chopped nicely and featuring a clean rub (black pepper predominated) and occasional, distant memories of woodsmoke. Several of the fries were skin-on and they were cooked crisply, but in some really funky oil, the scent of which also also stifled any enjoyment of the smoke on that odd one-way market row of State Street directly fronting the Dan Ryan.

    The best parts of the visit were the homemade sauce - lots of dark sugar, vinegar, tomato, pepper flakes - and the "free" can of Vess soda, that Missouri stalwart which tantalizes you with "corn syrup AND/OR sugar" and the palate-coating flavor of melted root beer barrel candies. To have sourced and stocked this so proudly, one might think Ali has experience in MO in addition to MOrocco as TimeOut suggests. I don't think this operation currently poses a challenge to Mack and Uncle John's, and Barbara Ann's has about quintuple the charm behind its own vintage counter, but 'cue is variable, they're not far from Hyde Park, and the staff has some swagger, so I'll give them another go.

    Image
  • Post #5 - May 4th, 2011, 9:13 am
    Post #5 - May 4th, 2011, 9:13 am Post #5 - May 4th, 2011, 9:13 am
    Hands down the best BBQ on the south side? Thats a loud and bold statement.
    Cool to see another BBQ joint open...will visit soon, maybe.
  • Post #6 - May 23rd, 2011, 9:14 am
    Post #6 - May 23rd, 2011, 9:14 am Post #6 - May 23rd, 2011, 9:14 am
    Big red Aquarium smoker burning wood, yes I looked, energetic charming owner, spotless dining and kitchen area, to the point pork menu w/turkey options, Smoke Signals had me smiling despite just spending 50-minutes stuck between two massive trucks in the 63rd street viaduct.

    Smoke Signals

    Image

    In addition to the Aquarium there is a wood burning pit in the backyard and an oil drum smoker on a trailer used for fairs, festivals and events.

    Chef Ali w/trailer and oil drum smoker

    Image

    Tasty turkey leg, good smoke penetration, moist, crisp skin.

    Turkey Leg

    Image

    Image

    Smoke Signals offers turkey and pork links plus pork tips and sliced turkey breast. Pork hot links best of the lot, turkey links were quite dry, neither had discernable smoke flavor. Pork rib tip skewed chewy, sliced turkey breast dry, no real smoke flavor in either.

    Pork tips and links foreground, sliced turkey breast and turkey links rear of pictrue

    Image

    We chatted a while with the personable Ali, who kindly gave us a tour of his establishment, he is of the if I don't toot my own horn no one else will school. Fun to listen to, and pitmen are not known for small egos, but what was on the plate did not back up his braggadocio.

    I'm of the opinion Chef Ali knows how to cook BBQ, time will tell whether he has simply not gotten into the rhythm of commercial BBQ, slow business extending holding cycles, or he should have stuck to selling turkey legs at festivals.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #7 - May 23rd, 2011, 9:15 pm
    Post #7 - May 23rd, 2011, 9:15 pm Post #7 - May 23rd, 2011, 9:15 pm
    The turkey leg sounds and looks good. You try any side's or taste the sauce at all?
    The Aquarium pit looks mega jumbo sized!

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