Rollin’ Smoke BBQ: Smoking Section, Please!

The new winner for widest gulf between location and quality, ever since Sheridan Su’s Great Bao no longer occupies Chair 4 at a hair salon, is Rollin’ Smoke Barbecue.

Located right in the heart of an only medium-scary strip club district, almost under a freeway, and next to an AM evangelical radio station, it’s not the most hospitable of places.  Despite this, it’s known by BBQ-experts and Southerner Ex-Pats as the best down-home meat experience money can buy here in town.

Speaking of money, pretty danged cheap too!  Thirteen clams gets you a trio of meats, one of their kicked-up unique sides, and a drink; all of this is enough for one very hearty meal.  There’s even an All You Can Eat (conflicting prices on in-store signs and website, either $18 or $25),  which I’m guessing is a perfect form of suicide.  Death By Meat, but what a way to go!

Pulled, link, and brisket

Almost everything they make in house, from jalapeno slaw to fried okra, spicy hot links (my particular favorite, but I’m always partial to sausage), catfish fry, and whatever golden ratio of spices they rub on all the meats.  They do about half a dozen different styles of ribs, each just a deep red from smoke and with nearly as much meat as a steak on a 3-bone portion.

The pulled pork shoulder is a smoke-bomb, and goes perfectly with their secret recipe sauce.  The tangy, peppery, and seducingly sweet paints the canvass of a pulled-pork sandwich perfectly.  I’ve noted the brisket can suffer the most from overcooking though.  The slow Tuesday I visited, it was fall-apart perfection, but the busy Saturday was rushed into stew meat.  Sad, but still on-par or above the “famous” chain-style barbecue dotting the landscape.

St. Louis rib, brisket, and link

In the way of non-smoked foods, sides notwithstanding, they stay in key with the southern tradition of fish+fry.  Cornmeal breaded catfish was a bulls eye,  and it came with these little jalapeno “corn ball” hushpuppies.  Outside of that, it’s all meat all the time.

Sorry Vegetarians.  This place is a addictive good (seriously, I’m getting the shakes thinking about those ribs), and if you need some pre- or post-strip club grub, bub, then you need to make a “pit” stop.

Catfish fry, jalapeno corn balls, potato salad


3185 S Highland Dr, Ste 2,3

Las Vegas, NV 89109

(702) 836-3621

2 thoughts on “Rollin’ Smoke BBQ: Smoking Section, Please!

  1. If there’s no smoke, it’s not BBQ. Most BBQ in Las Vegas is of the fraud variety – i.e., they throw it into a regular oven. Baked low & slow, the fraud stuff does get nice and tender, but because it lacks the smokey deliciousness of authentic wood-smoked BBQ, we the BBQ-savvy (I grew up in Kansas City) sneer at the frauds. You’ll never see a wisp of smoke coming out of Memphis Championship, Lucille’s, or Famous Dave’s. To get the real McCoy, you have to go to a joint like Rollin’ Smoke, where you can see the smokers billowing away right in front of the restaurant. Do yourself a huge favor and avoid the frauds!

  2. Spot on review, ELV! I tried it for lunch today and was shocked at how good it was. Anybody going there should be warned, though–this place will ruin your appetite for the other BBQ joints in Vegas.

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