The welcome: so often, new restaurants offer something in their name that bears no relation to the reality. Connoisseurs of accuracy will therefore be pleased that the new Bermondsey hot spot Texas Joe’s Smoked Meats is indeed run by a man named Joe Walters, who sports an incredibly fine ten-gallon hat, and who does hail from Texas. It is also not a surprise to find that this establishment specialises in smoked meats. After several successful pop-ups, it has now found a permanent home between Bermondsey and London Bridge, and sets about showing ersatz establishments how things should be done.
The room: the benches outside might be less glitzy than some establishments, but on a hot evening, there’s probably nothing nicer than sitting outside here with a cold beer or refreshing glass of wine and supping on some excellent meat. Inside, the ambience is less ‘down home’ – there’s a merciful absence of Americana cliché — and more ‘industrial chic’, with plenty of exposed concrete everywhere.
The food: Joe takes his meats extremely seriously, which is important, as this is one of the most uncompromisingly carnivorous places that we’ve visited in a while. Beef brisket, mutton, pork and chicken all feature on the menu in various guises, smoked and seasoned to perfection (although we weren’t entirely sold on the brisket we tried, which was a little dry for our tastes). Sides of (delicious) brisket nachos and fries are superb, and it’s easy to end up ordering a considerable feast between two. On our visit, there didn’t seem to be any sign of a dessert menu, but then you’re likely to be so full that you wouldn’t care.
Drinkswise there is a good selection of beers from producers such as the Camden Town Brewery and Bermondey’s own Kernel, which are selected to match the food and thankfully don’t overpower it. If it’s wine that you’re after, there are a few whites, although the meaty onslaught is better suited to a gutsy Malbec. In typical south-east London style, the wine is served out of tumblers, but you’re unlikely to be so refined that you mind.
Would we go again?: Yes, definitely – and next time we’ll be trying to find more appropriate attire
|Texas Joe's Smoked Meats restaurant review
|Texas Joe's Smoked Meats, 8-9 Snowsfields, Bermondsey , London , SE1 3SU | MAP
|London Bridge (underground)
18 Jul 16 – 19 Oct 17, 12:00 PM – 11:00 PM