I love BBQ and like a lot of my friends in Orlando, I will travel when needed to get the good stuff. So I was super excited when I learned about newcomer Smokemade Meats + Eats. Well, they aren’t exactly NEW.
Smokemade Meats + Eats was born from a passion for low and slow Central Texas-style BBQ while Tyler Brunache lived in Washington DC in 2019. For years, barbecue had been a passionate hobby for Tyler. He started cooking for friends while in college at Florida State University. After a stage and one-on-one cooks with well-traveled pitmaster Dylan Taylor, the hobby became a mission.
Tyler earned a devoted and loyal fanbase throughout the DC metro area thanks to his successful weekly market appearances and pop-ups at local craft beer breweries. The pandemic influenced him to return back home to Orlando, FL to be closer to family and friends.
Smoked brisket, pork spare ribs, turkey breast, pulled pork, housemade sausages, and scratch-made sides have delighted hungry diners at the Smokemade pop-ups at Ivanhoe Park Brewing in Ivanhoe Village, Redlight Redlight in the Audubon Park district, and Castle Church Brewing in the Lee Vista / Conway area. They are now expanding their reach and you can find them all around Orlando at least once a week.
Tyler and the team don’t take shortcuts. Each pop-up requires a week of preparation and over 24 hours of attention to ensure their smoked meats speak to the love and care they have for this classic method of barbequing. Briskets are rested, house sausages are double smoked, and only wood (never faster, less flavorful alternatives) is used. True to the time-honored rituals of Central Texas pitmasters, the seasonings are kept to a minimum so that the method and the meat can speak for itself.
The Smokemade Meats + Eats menu consists of the following amazing offerings:
● Brisket: Smoked for 16 hours and rested for an additional 10-12 hours. Seasoned with coarse kosher salt, 16 mesh black pepper, garlic and onion powder, the meat is the star with a balanced savory profile, rich and black pepper forward flavors. Available by ½ lb, in a sandwich or in a platter.
● Pork Spare Ribs: Seasoned with 16 mesh black pepper and seasoning salt, the pork ribs benefit from a six hour cook, then are wrapped in glaze and rested for 2 hours to yield a fall off the bone tender meat with honey and black pepper flavors. Available by ½ lb and in a platter.
● Pulled Pork: Smoked for 10 hours, then rested for 12-15 hours, seasoned with coarse kosher salt and 16 mesh black pepper, the pork is tossed with vinegar sauce to order and full of flavor. Available by ½ lb, in a sandwich or platter. $10 – 1/2lb, $11 – sandwich
● Turkey Breast: the flavors of Thanksgiving and BBQ combined for a savory and buttery turkey breast seasoned with kosher salt, 16 mesh black pepper, garlic, onion powder and paprika. Finished in butter, it’s the sleeper hit of the menu. Available by ½ lb, in a sandwich or platter.
● Housemade Hot Gut Sausage: Cold smoked for 4 hours then smoked for an hour before service, the blend of pork and beef seasoned with a variety of spices including garlic and chili flakes, yields a well balanced hearty and beefy sausage. Available per link and in platters, $4.50/link
● Housemade Jalapeño Cheddar Sausage: Cold smoked for 4 hours then smoked for an hour before service, this well balanced pork and beef blend with a whisper of heat is seasoned with a variety of spices, gooey cheddar and fresh jalapeño are added to the mix. Available per link and in platters, $4.50 /link.
● Side Dishes include traditional sweet and tangy Apple Coleslaw with gala apples, mix of green and red cabbage, and creamy dressing. Jalapeno Dill Potato Salad offers a creamy potato salad with a touch of peppery heat. Slow cooked Pinto Beans cooked with a proprietary blend of savory seasonings and salt pork till tender. Jalapeno Cheddar grits (vegetarian-friendly) made with fresh Jalapeños offer a heartier taste of the South.
I was lucky enough to try everything on their menu, sides include, at two of their recent pop-ups. I immediately fell in love! Turkey is my go-to when it comes to BBQ, but many times it is an afterthought on the menu and not the best. But that is not the case here! You can tell that they put the time and effort into making this simple meat stand out just as much as the others on the menu.
My favorite side dish BY FAR is the Jalapeno Dill Potato Salad. It is amazing and so flavorful! It will definitely give your grandma’s potato salad a run for the money. Don’t like the jalapeno in the name scare you off! I’m a wuss when it comes to heat and this potato salad has just the right amount to give it some amazing flavor.
So next time you are out and about in Orlando and need something great to eat, pull out your phone and find out where Smokemade is going to be. I promise you it is worth the long line that you are bound to find when you show up.
For more information visit Smokemade.com and follow on social media @SmokemadeMeats #SmokemadeMeats