Smitty’s is just too good to dock it a star based on one mediocre visit, but this last one wasn’t up to the level I’m used to at Smitty’s. [After some poignant review of the last few visits, I must reconsider the high rating of five stars. Of four visits, three have been mediocre, including the last two. This is not a streak worthy of such a high rating.] While the sausage was well smoked as always, I realized I just like a bit of pork in the mix to moisten things up. This all beef sausage is just so intensely beefy, but it if you top a saltine with a slice and a dot of hot sauce, it makes for a great flavor combination.

The sweet glazed pork ribs were huge and meaty, but needed more time on the smoker to render out those gobs of fat. The end cut off the pork chop was an excellent cut with plenty of seasoning and great smokiness. The meat was moist, and the chunks of fat were nicely rendered. Clod wasn’t ready so we opted for brisket which was the biggest disappointment. The tough slices held little smokiness, and while they were well seasoned, they needed much more cooking time to tenderize. The fat remaining on each slice was also a bit chewy and unappetizing. This is odd since Smitty’s has a knack for making fat appetizing, seriously.

Finally, there’s just something about the attitude the staff here. The meat cutter almost seemed annoyed that he had to stop his smoke break at the counter to go back and cut off some brisket for us. I know they’ll get the business regardless of the level of service, but it would add so much to the mystique and small town feel of this joint if they just made a sincere effort to help their customers enjoy what can be a great meal.

(This review originally appeared on Full Custom Gospel BBQ.)