Thursday, April 25, 2013

holy moley! holy smoke!

Three words: Oh My Gawd!

Calgary was a stopover for us, a means to an end, and that end is the picturesque Banff. We almost didn't stop at all, thinking we can drive all the way through to Banff and just have a large supper there. But our stomachs have their own minds, stopping for lunch we must.

Urbanspoon being our food bible, the top ranking cheap food was Holy Smoke with its the impossibly high rating. We arrived right in time for the busy lunch hour. The queue was ridiculously long, spilling out of the door, I said to my husband, "This better be worth it".  

Fortunately the Holy Smoke staff were consummate professionals, they worked quickly and efficiently taking orders, filling them and cleaning the table. The nice and sunny weather also helped a little.

Never having been here before, I only ordered a small pulled pork sandwich, a small beef brisket sandwich and two ribs (two!!! only two measly pieces!! Yes, I am kicking myself). Our order came on trays that have been lined with waxed kraft paper, the kind you can find everywhere in indonesia for wrapping the ubiquitous nasi bungkus.

Chopped beef brisket sandwich (regular) - $5.99
Pork ribs - $1 / bone
I've had pulled pork sandwiches elsewhere before and since my visit. But I can tell you none of them can hold a candle to these holy smoke sandwiches. Never in my life have I eaten pulled pork so tender and melt-in-my-mouth that I was more or less inhaling it. This was  surprising to me, because from first glance it looked mighty dry. Although the tangy, slightly spicy sauce helped lubricate things a bit, it's not why the pork is so tender and moist.

And how about the smokeyness? What is up with that? How do they get it to be so addictively smokey.

I also appreciate the bit of slaw there in between the pulled pork and the top bun, it gave the sandwich texture it would otherwise lack, considering the only other component (the bun) was soft and pillowy.

Pulled pork sandwich (regular) - $5.89
The ribs... So tender they fell apart from the bone, with dry rub you can see, and smell and taste. Should. Have. Ordered. More.

In contrast, the chopped beef brisket sandwich although it looked more moist than the pulled pork sandwich, in taste it paled in comparison. It was delicious, but nothing special to write home about. Considering Holy Smoke's pulled pork sandwich is one of my TOP FIVE BEST meal in Canada, its chopped beef brisket really did not stand a chance.

Holy Smoke BBQ on Urbanspoon
Holy Smoke

#4, 4640 Manhattan Rd SE
Open Monday-Friday 10am-8pm, Saturday 11am-4pm

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