on December 21, 2006
UPDATE: THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED 5-28-2007One of the new additions to Providence Place Mall is Smokey Bones. They are a member of the Darden Restaurant Group which also owns Olive Garden and Red Lobster. In the case of Smokey Bones the decor is definitely rustic mountain cabin with lots of wood, a very open feeling and multiple TVs that you have the control over. Well at least you can control which one you listen to if you choose to listen. Sports are usually all the choices you have but at least you have a choice. The booths are large here you almost have too much room if that is possible. We first became acquainted with them in Georgia about 4 years ago and in 2004 they built a restaurant near our cottage in PA. We were very excited to see that now there is one located at Providence Place. The menu is heavy on meat with steaks, ribs done St Louis style with a dry rub or a more southern wet style. There are combination plates that let you try several of their specialties. I personally am addicted to their pulled pork. It is so moist and flavorful that adding sauce is almost not required. Almost of course because they have some very good sauces and you have your choice on the table. I like the mustard based sauce while Al always goes for the thicker sweeter traditional style sauce.Our favorite is a pulled pork lunch platter. You get a very generous lunch portion of the pulled pork and two sides. In our Atkins days we always got the cole slaw and the broccoli. I am not kidding, theirs is the best broccoli I have ever eaten anywhere. I think it has garlic butter but what ever it has it is fantastic. The cole slaw is a sweeter version without the horseradish but it is very tasty and never dry. If you want to pay a little extra you have fresh asparagus or when I really want to go off the deep end I order the onion rings. These are giant onion rings and really if you eat the whole appetizer portion yourself I can’t imagine how you could eat anything else, it is huge. The pulled pork platter also has a slice of garlic bread, Texas style.We rarely have room for dessert but on one occasion we did have the bag of fresh cinnamon donuts. They are mini donuts and actually very good. They have a full bar and serve both import and domestic beers. I usually get either a Corona Light and Al goes for the Micelob Ultra. We have never had anything but excellent service in our many visits. The servers are mostly young college students and certainly are counting on their tips. You are always greeted with a smile at the door and sometimes they even have someone who opens the door for you. For a chain restaurant this is exceptionally good.
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