PoP Preview: Smoke & Barrel – Beer.BBQ.Bourbon

Smoke and Barrel is the new Craft beer, bourbon and BBQ joint opening up above Asylum at 2471 18th St, NW in Adams Morgan. When we last checked in on them in late Aug. they were still finishing the renovations and finalizing the menu. Well, the renovations have now been completed and some folks who remember what the space used to look like will think they are hallucinating. Contractor Joe Wood did an amazing job with the bar.

They will be having their grand opening on Tuesday. Lots of photos including a look at their menus after the jump. I know there are tons of bbq fans so we’ll def. revisit to see what you guys think of the food.

Ed. Note: Asylum and Smoke & Barrel are owned by the same folks who own Meridian Pint (primarily John Andrade) and is a PoP advertiser.

Lots more photos after the jump.

Bar stools made from old barrels.

53 Comment

  • nice! though i have to wonder about how new businesses seem to open in clusters in dc. first the cupcake thing, then the burger thing, now, seemingly, the BBQ thing (american ice, standard, hill country…)

    it’s also a bit odd to have two places that specialize in bourbon within 2 blocks – but hey, i wish them success (and i will visit for sure). first new interesting thing to pop up in adams morgan in a while.

  • That BBQ tofu looks interesting. Gotta give that a try.

  • Cool barstools!

    The menu looks great. I’m glad to see something more upscale and less big-slize-pizza open on 18th. Looking forward to giving it a try.

  • I’m still a little bitter about the closing of Asylum’s top bar, but some BBQ Smoked Tofu might ease my sorrows. More than happy to give it a try!

    • Seconded. Asylum’s top bar was great, but I am very interested by the BBQ Smoked Tofu. I hope it’s as good as the vegan wings were at Asylum

  • Bourbon and BBQ are made for each other. The platters all seem reasonably priced, too. Cannot wait to try it out!

  • I miss the old Asylum a lot, but I’m really looking forward to this place. Hopefully the food is better than at Meridian Pint, which has been hit or miss for me.

  • I will not be going personally. A majority of the Asylum staff was let go in an effort to discourage the “regulars” from frequenting the new venue. Guess they have no intentions of catering to that “element” anymore. Amusing, considering these are the people who made them what they are.

    • saf

      Really? Can you expand on this?

      • Just a house cleaning really. Similar thing happened at Toledo Lounge and we see how stellar they’re doing right now (I walked by on Friday evening and saw maybe two people total). As people know, Asylum had quite the cast of characters. Some not particularly inviting to a prospective hi end BBQ/beer snobbery pub. The bartenders in question that were released were believed to have drawn that “demographic”.

    • You could not be further from the truth. All previous staff were offered the opportunity to continue with the new concept. Only a few chose to do so. As for the ‘regulars’, they have always been the life blood of Asylum and will ALWAYS be welcome. -John Andrade (owner)

      • I think there was a particular blonde, female bartender that would not exactly agree with your revisionist statements.

        • Most establishments needs to evolve or fade away. I chose evolution. Evolution includes new standards, rules & regulations. Not everyone is capable nor interested in any of that. I’m happy to welcome those not afraid of change. Sounds like we won’t be seeing you. -John Andrade (owner)

      • I have heard from a former female Meridian Pint employee that treatment of staff, especially women, was poor and often pushed over into sexual harassment. Hope this isn’t a trend within these establishments.

        • Hey Equality, that’s a pretty bold accusation. One that seems to be based on a possible disgruntled ex-employee. If you are going to throw rumors out like that, maybe you should have enough character to leave your name with it.

      • Old DC is gone Real Jason. Characters are welcome only on TV.

        This is the new DC and it caters solely to new DC.

  • Fried okra? I’m there!

    You can take the boy out of the south, but you can’t take the south out of the boy.

  • Pumpking and Green Flash on tap? Eljah Craig Single Barrel? Smoked meat? *wipes a tear from his eye*

  • claire

    Wow, the menu looks amazing – love me some barbecue! And the beer selection is definitely to my liking as well.

  • The menu looks good, and since I live nearby I will definitely try it out. Don’t knock things like bbq tofu! I’m not vegetarian but love me some good tofu once in a while.

    That said, I hope it doesn’t go the way of most of the nicer restaurants on 18th Street in Adam’s Morgan, which seem to sit almost empty every evening, and only fill up when they turn into crazy bars late at night on the weekend. I wonder if there is too high a density of restaurants there? With a few exceptions, most sit-down restaurants on the strip don’t seem to do a ton of business during dinner. Not sure why?

    • Don’t think that’s exactly true. The restaurants that get it mostly right seem to do very well throughout the week (eg: Casa Oaxaca, Himalayan Heritage, Meze). From this preview, I suspect Smoke & Barrell will also do well. The beer and food menus look incredible and the price point (especially on the food) is just right.

  • Schenkerla from the oak casks.. done.

  • Had a chance to check out the place last night. The fried pickle chips, pulled pork, and espresso-rubbed brisket were all kickass. I also think the beer list, while not as large as Churchkey’s, might be the best in town. Seriously good drafts and cans. I hope (referring to previous commenter’s post) that this place is a local dinner spot as well as bar. The prices are really, really reasonable–entrees with sides are under $15.

  • Now is a good time for John Andrade to go ahead and share his opening night specials.

  • Toledo’s hamburgers were arguably the best in the district and outside of Quarry House and Rays, possibly the area. Yes, it was not pristine and glimmering.. but it had it’s fans. Far more I’d imagine then the current incarnation.

  • Schlafly IPA on Draft yummmm

  • Love the renovation! Everything Joe Wood touches turns to gold, he is an artist.

  • looks awesome. even if bbq is currently in bandwagon mode, it’s a far cry from froyo, cupcakery, foodtrucking, burger slinging, et al. interesting that it happened to asylum (of all places on admo strip), but again, looks awesome and will give it a try. my only criticism: the bar stools actually look too high relative to the tables/bars. of course, only a visit will clear that.

  • Half of the shit john and mr.big time drew are talking about is bullshit yeah the former employees were offered to come back but really they were not going to be kept. some of the employees that were kept were let go right when they started hiring for the new place. the decision was full of sketchy proposals and there were alot of two face shit going on. it was all about his business, as drew said it best when they were making plans(THIS ISNT PERSONAL ITS BUSINESS)well to alot of the employees it was personal and alot of backstabbing bullshit. but i hope his new place does ok he stabbed alot of people in the back in the process.

    • I prefer the old staff and old groove. At least then I could get half off all the time. Nice tip meant nice discount. Gee, I wonder why he chose not to keep the old staff and change things.

  • This place looks great, I’m there.

  • austindc

    I thought this place seemed a little pricey for my budget, though I am desperately searching for palatable barbecue in DC. But then I saw they have Porterhouse from Dublin. So shit, I guess I will be there every damn day.

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