Don’t Mess With Texas

Everyone has a different opinion about American barbeque. Some love the pork-centric Southern-style, while others prefer Kansas City-style which uses a variety of meats glazed with sauce. But if you’re a fan of the dry-rub, beef-heavy Texas style, then I’ve got the place for you, Cowpoke. Smoke City Market in Sherman Oaks has some of the best Texas-style barbeque outside of the Lone Star State and certainly the best I’ve ever had in LA. Everything about Smoke City Market reminds me of barbeque joints I’ve eaten at in Texas. You order at a counter, where the meat is sold by the pound and carved to order. There are no plates; your meat is placed on butcher paper and sides are served in plastic containers. There are no napkins, but rather rolls of paper towels on the wall. All the barbeque is accompanied by slices of white bread.

The brisket at Smoke City Market is incredible and is an absolute must-have. There are two kinds: moist and lean. I’m partial to the moist, but love the lean (pictured above) as well. The brisket is made with an incredibly tasty rub and smoked for over twelve hours. The result is a flavor that’s “big as all hell and half of Texas.” Like any respectable Texas barbeque restaurant, sauces are served on the side. Smoke City Market also has awesome beef ribs, pork ribs, chicken, turkey and sausage, as well as great sides which are all made from scratch. I love the Tomato and Cucumbers salad, which is super fresh, as well as the German Potato Salad. The Longhorn Mac (mac ‘n cheese) is also excellent. Other favorites of mine include the Red Cabbage, Pit Beans and the Chili. For dessert, I recommend the Cobbler and the Banana Pudding.

Smoke City Market is located at 5242 Van Nuys Blvd. in Sherman Oaks. UPDATE: WITH A HEAVY HEART, I MUST REPORT THAT SMOKE CITY MARKET IS NOW CLOSED. THE VALLEY JUST CAN’T CATCH A BREAK.

Tomato & Cucumbers


Moist Brisket


BBQ Chicken


Longhorn Mac


Pit Beans


Red Cabbage


Pecan Pie


Cobbler


A little bit of Texas in Sherman Oaks


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9 Comments

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9 Responses to Don’t Mess With Texas

  1. Jed

    Howard, agree. It’s the closest thing to a Texas barbecue joint in Los Angeles. That doesn’t mean it is particularly close, because LA barbecue is pretty weak, generally. For flavor, I still prefer Boneyard Bistro, but it lacks the “joint” feel, has a much broader menu, and is pricier.

    Nice review. Keep ’em coming!

  2. Suju

    This place is just up the street from us in a spot that has seen many restaurants come and go. Hopefully this one is a keeper. The brisket (lean for me), mac and cheese, pit beans, ribs, and beets are my favorties.

  3. Dan

    Great review Howard. I have passed that place over 100 times and wondered if it was any good. I will definitely give it a try.

  4. Judd

    Alright Howard I’m on my way to try it out. I’ll give you my report after a heavy portion of meat,meat,meat. If they don’t serve squirrel……..it ain’t hillbilly enough for me! Miss you buddy

  5. Hold the press about SCM. I’m a huge fan of Mike G’s efforts at SCM, but let’s keep this a secret for as long as we can.

    Hailing from Texas, I believe SCM has the Texas BBQ formula on lock. I have a selfish reservation about SCM’s growing into the ultimate Texas BBQ joint in LA, as back home, folks serving a lesser-tasting faire than SCM’s have crowds waiting in line before opening every day and send half of those people home without any meat every day. I have no doubt that SCM’s reputation will create this exact circumstance in LA (worse).

    When the sell-outs start happening, I hope SCM creates a native-Texan express lane so I can continue to tolerate Mike’s love of the ole Burnt Orange.

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