Get us in your inbox


Smoke & Dough

  • Restaurants
  • Tamiami
  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Recommended
Smoke & Dough
Photograph: Eric Barton for Time Out

Time Out says

3 out of 5 stars

There are hits and misses at Smoke & Dough, a barbecue spot we want to root for.

There’s no participation trophy in restaurant reviews. But if I could give an “A for effort,” it’d go to Smoke & Dough. Because what it’s trying to do—update American barbecue into something very Miami—is the best idea since somebody decided to stuff guava and cheese into a pastelito. 

The thing is, Smoke & Dough has that meet-cute backstory that makes people want to root for a restaurant. Owners Harry and Michelle Coleman,met while working at the FIU student newspaper. They couldn't find journalism jobs after graduating in 2008 (who could?), so eventually they opened Empanada Harry's in a Kendall strip mall. They later added Smoke & Dough as an adjoining restaurant. It might have just been a quiet little barbecue place if the New York Times hadn’t put Smoke & Dough on a list of restaurants the paper was most excited about in 2023. Then things blew up. 

The early Saturday night I was there, “reserved” placards sat on every table—yes, a barbecue place that takes reservations. The theme is “modern smokehouse,” corrugated metal in place of tiles in the drop ceiling, a pelt on the wall, “BBQ” lit up in bare bulbs in a sign hanging above our heads. The Sinatra soundtrack, loud and lively, added to the man-cave vibe.  

Some of the dishes excel at combining Southern barbecue with Latin flavors. The brisket features slices of tender, cafecito-rubbed meat atop a rich mole sauce with an artful swirl of herb oil. The bravas substitute fried yuca for potatoes and add heat from a dried pepper salsa and chipotle aioli.  

There are hits and misses. The pulled pork sandwich with slaw and dill pickles on griddled potato bread headed toward dessert territory with a guava sauce as sweet as pecan pie. The choripan sandwich generally worked, with its thick slice of smoked mozzarella and chimichurri mayo, but it became a test of incisors with chewy-skinned sausage. 

The mac and cheese had nice flavor from bacon and truffle oil, but the cheese sauce needed five minutes more thickening and the pasta was so overcooked it became textureless. The flan, which spends five hours in the smoker, had a gummy texture and a smoke flavor that just didn’t work in a dessert, making us realize too late why the server was trying to steer us away from the signature dish.

At times, Smoke & Dough heads toward chefy territory with pretty presentations on real plates. But then there are the cheap napkin dispensers on the tables, plastic cups for water, paper containers for the sides and boxes of foodstuffs stacked near the bathroom. We had to flag down our server for just about everything, but this is also just about the cheeriest wait staff around.

It’s easy to want Smoke & Dough to work. Perhaps they’ll tweak some things, maybe add a bit of vinegar to that sauce. But for now, we can say only that Smoke & Dough deserves an award for a very good try.

Eric Barton
Written by
Eric Barton


Sabina Shopping Center
4013 SW 152nd Ave
Do you own this business?
Sign in & claim business
You may also like
You may also like