4th of July is around the corner and if you live in Bangkok, it’s the time of year you risk gamma ray exposure by leaving home before 8pm in search of BBQ. Fortunately for both of our hungry asses, BBQ is having a bit of a moment in Bangkok. I’m afraid to say ‘trend’ lest the mustaches and flower prints come running, but it’s true that barbecue has been popping up both in new places (Bud’s Food Truck, Deli’Q, and Good Neighbor) and having a resurgence on menus at established restaurants around the city.
Food Photo: Tito’s Texas Mule made with Tito’s Homemade Vodka (Austin, Texas)
Have the BBQ gods heard our prayers?
I’m overlooking all those places this year and recommending you check out one spot this 4th of July, The Smokin’ Pug, as the top spot to get your fingers sticky in Bangkok. Located on Surawong Road where one minute you’re going WTF as you pass red light district Patpong and the next moment, you’re in an oasis of Americana where you can’t but help noticing the John Lee Hooker is on, Tito’s Texas Vodka is on the wall, and the fridge full of craft beer.
Food Photo: Smoked Buffalo Wings with Homemade Buttermilk Ranch or Chiang Rai Blue Cheese Dipping Sauce
I expected more from the cocktail menu and indeed there’s plenty of Rogue and other Beervana brews on the menu, but you can’t get any of the craft beers on tap just yet and . However, the owners did tell me they would be focusing more on the bar after they reopened. The food menu, on the other hand, was more than I expected with two pages of dinner options available. The menu is made mostly of drinking snacks like their Smoked Buffalo Wings (250 THB), a touch of bbq-fied Mexican dishes like Smoked Brisket Quesadillas (395 THB), and heavy hitters of everything you’d expect from burgers to full and half racks of Baby Back Ribs (575 THB / 825 THB).
Food Photo: Slider Plate, a Platter with Pulled Pork, Smoked Brisket, and Buffalo Chicken Rolls
BBQ Sauce Covers A Multitude of Sins…
There’s a Slider Plate (395 THB) on offer which is a nice introduction to the meats most heavily featured on the menu, comprised of three nice sized rolls with pulled pork, beef brisket, and buffalo chicken. The buffalo chicken comes topped in blue cheese ranch, but the others arrive unaccompanied, leaving it up to you to decide which of their bbq sauces to squeeze on. The tastiest sauce and what globs and glazes all the ribs your order is the Kansas City BBQ Sauce which is good, but heavy and easy to overdose on by the end of the meal.
Food Photo: Half Rack of Ribs, Baked Beans, and Honey Glazed Corn Bread
I know the baby back ribs will get the most attention from visitors, but I thought the beef brisket was special and easy to overlook hiding beneath the restaurant’s super crispy onion strings. It’s also no small accomplishment in Bangkok to have great sides on offer like The Smokin’ Pug does well. The sweet, honey striped cornbread and the bbq baked beans are winners, only their slaw still needs some work. Altogether there’s plenty to celebrate, especially this time of year, with a visit to The Smokin’ Pug. Most importantly, the arrival of a Bangkok bbq house with great food and hospitality.
PS – The Smokin’ Pug’s all day 4th of July party the last chance to fill up on their Kansas City style ribs before they close temporarily, reopening again late July.
The Smokin’ Pug Bar & Restaurant Location and Hours
Address: 88 Surawong Road, Silom, Bangkok
Directions: Take BTS Skytrain Station Sala Daeng or MRT Silom and make your way over to Surawong Road (it’s parallel to Silom Rd so you have the joy of walking through Taniya or Patpong to get there). You’ll find it on the opposite side of the street right after the old Tarntawan Hotel (for visitors it’s not far from the Le Meridian either).
Phone Number: 083 029 7598
Hours: 5pm – 12am, Tuesday – Sunday
Price Range: 400 – 800 THB per person
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/smokinpug/
Note: This meal was complimentary.