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A smokin' sample of Garden City 'cue
Yeah buddy: On a hot Georgia day, the AC is going full blast at Smokey's

It’s easy to miss Smokey’s BBQ. Most folks come screamin’ off the end of Highway 516 and quickly realize they’ve gotta hit the brakes or face the wrath of Garden City PD.

But glance to the right, just before Garden City’s first traffic light, and you will see the ’cue joint nestled right up against the right–of–way fence.

Despite its dive-joint appearance, Smokey’s is very neat, clean and tidy. Plenty of surrounding parking makes access easy and on a hot Georgia summer day, the air conditioning is going full blast.

Kick back and savor the coolness – ’cause you’re going to spend some time enjoying this plate of smoked pork.

I chose a chopped pork platter. I miss BBQ joints where the only plate was a piece of wax paper, but those days are gone. Wax paper has been replaced by the foam clamshell – and this one’s biggest compartment was brimming with pork.

There were plenty of little pieces of fat mixed in with bits of tender, moist white meat and chewy darker bits. The fat adds moisture – and flavor - to what, otherwise, would be just another pile of smoked meat.

Smokey’s mild sauce topped the meat – it is a tangy red sauce that, thankfully, was not over–sugared into submission. There is a hot sauce – I’ll be trying that next time.

I chose side dishes of potato salad – creamy and fresh with big chunks of potato – and baked beans. The baked beans are the usual suspects – and are the classic side for a heaping mound of chopped pork.

Two simple slices of white bread aid pushing around the ’cue and mopping up porky goodness.

Several office and blue collar workers scored carry–out when I was there – but there is adequate seating for up to about 20 hungry diners.

Smokey’s is simplicity at its best. Non–pretentious and authentic – it’s a BBQ destination worthy of the trip.

4118 Augusta Road/964–0485

A new Southside coffee shop

Vincenzo’s Coffee Cafe promises “no foo–foo coffee here, just an honest cup of Joe.” This project of neighboring Vincenzo’s Pizzeria offers up a daily menu of morning pastries, rolls and hot meals – as well as a lunch menu jammed full of fresh deli meats, salads and hot specials. The cafe is open 6:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday and 8 a.m.–3 p.m. Sunday.

 12409 White Bluff Road (Corner of White Bluff and Windsor Avenue)/358–0041