Bones Smokehouse
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  • 00 in the afternoon, there were several tables occupied but the place was not crowded by a long shot. We were seated immediately and our server came over to get our drink orders. I didn’t even have to look at the menu to know that I wanted an order of their fried pickles ($4.95), which I consider to be among the best in Chattanooga (they’re in good company, as my other favorites are at Public House with the pimento cheese). The fried pickles came out quickly, served with tiger sauce, a mayo and horseradish based sauce that’s like Arby’s Horsey sauce but better. I love that they serve pickle chips, not spears (chips are much less dangerous to the roof of your mouth, and they hold together better since you eat them in one bite), and they are hand-breaded with cornmeal. They’re fried to a light crisp and not overly greasy. I’d missed them so. It took me a while to decide what to order. I was torn between going classic (pulled pork sandwich) or a little off the beaten path (pulled pork tacos or enchiladas). I decided that since Philip had the tacos the first time we went to Bones Smokehouse (scroll down to see that review) that I would get something different. I never order chicken at barbecue joints, so I decided to be a little rebellious and do just that. I settled on the pulled smoked chicken with fried okra and french fries ($9.95), also served with a cornbread muffin (garlic toast was also an option). The sides were decent, though I’m fairly certain that both were just frozen standards. The cornbread muffin was pretty good, albeit sweet, which is not my preference. I was not thrilled with the whipped spread in place of butter (why why why do restaurants do this?). The chicken was nice and smoky, though (I did wish that they used dark meat or at least a combination of white and dark meat, since white meat gets dry so easily). I found myself wishing for pork, because it’s just better suited for smoking since it has more fat and stays more moist. I liked the chicken, though, and thought it would have been delicious as chicken salad. I liked all of the sauces (except for the hot, which I did not attempt); however, my favorite was the tiger sauce that was served with the pickles. It reminded me a lot of Alabama white sauce, which is customarily served with smoked chicken. Philip decided to go for the special, which was a blackened prime rib sandwich ($8.95). Bones Smokehouse serves smoked prime rib every Friday night, so I suppose they had leftovers that they wanted to use up. It was served on a bun with lettuce and tomato, and our server also brought him a cup of tiger sauce. We were surprised to see a large slice of prime rib on the bun instead of more “shaved” slices, which is what we were expecting. Prime rib, you guys, is a perfect medium for smoking, texture wise (I am sure that some purists would turn their nose up at the idea of putting a prime side of beef in a smoker, but seriously, it works). The amount of fat in the cut makes it super tender and moist, and it was so flavorful and smoky. When I tried it, I was concerned that since it was a pretty thick slice of meat that it would be difficult to bite through, but it was extremely tender and easy to bite into. The tiger sauce was a perfect complement (we always eat our prime rib with a little prepared horseradish). Pre-tip, our total (for my pulled chicken plate, Philip’s sandwich, fried pickles, and a craft beer) was $32.05. Maybe a little pricier than some people would expect for barbecue, but Bones Smokehouse has lots of items on their menu that you would expect at a barbecue restaurant. They know their way around a smoker, and they also know their way around some fried pickles.



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