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Smoke & Mirrors BBQ

Featuring delicious meats and ‘outrageous’ cocktails, Smoke & Mirrors BBQ is bringing authentic Texas-style BBQ to Middlesbrough.

A restaurant owned by a chef who has worked in a Michelin star restaurant has opened its doors on Linthorpe Road. Featuring delicious meats and ‘outrageous’ cocktails, Smoke & Mirrors BBQ is bringing authentic Texas-style  BBQ to Middlesbrough.

“Smoke & Mirrors in an authentic-style BBQ smokehouse”, explains Co-owner Kris Lawrence.

“A lot of places in the UK now do what they assume to be American BBQ, which is usually things like pulled pork or ribs with loads of sauce, but it isn’t actually proper BBQ.”

“Authentic BBQ isn’t defined by the sauce that’s on the food, authentic BBQ is the style of cooking.”

Which is why Smoke & Mirrors smoke all of their meats fresh in-house every day. They don’t buy anything pre-made externally and everything is made in-house, including sauces, rubs and even the burger cheese. The restaurant also grinds its own meat to make its signature burgers.

All of the meats are sourced from within 20 miles of Middlesbrough, excluding the wagyu which comes from a little village just outside York.

Keen to stay away from gimmicks and add a British twist to their cuisine, the new smokehouse offers lamb shanks, duck legs and pork cheeks alongside an array of ever-changing meats.

“Pork cheeks are a big thing at the minute round here, people seem to love the pork cheeks”, explains Kris.

“The biggest seller by far, though, is the wagyu brisket. It’s amazing, it just falls apart on the plate.”

Born and bred in Middlesbrough, Kris trained as a chef over 20 years ago in the Swallow Hotel. He went on to work in restaurants all over the country, from Stockton to Yarm to York, and even as far as Wales. His experience as a chef ranges from working in nursing homes all the way up to a Michelin star restaurant.

The talented chef co-owns Smoke and Mirrors BBQ with friend Richard Lonsdale, who used to work off-shore. After the end of his previous product-based business, Kris wanted to get back into the kitchen, and with long-time BBQ enthusiast Richard looking for a change of lifestyle, the pair decided to go for it.

Based in the former site of cocktail bar Ta Moko, Smoke & Mirrors BBQ also has a fully-licensed bar serving a popular bottomless brunch and a range of ‘outrageous’ cocktails.

“I’m really proud of our cocktails, I’d put them up against any other place in Middlesbrough”, says Kris.

“People just love the cocktails. We get groups of women coming in being very prim and proper, and then falling out the door when they’re done!”

Smoke & Mirrors BBQ opens every Thursday – Sunday from midday. Tables are available for booking on their website.

Visit their Facebook page to view the menu.

Find Smoke & Mirrors BBQ

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