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Calgary,Palomino Smokehouse and Social Club?

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Any thoughts or reviews? I want to try it, but its right in one of the sketchiest parts of town.

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  1. You do not need to worry about the location. That particular side of the street is less than respectable but it is across from an LRT station, a half a block from the Hyatt and a little more from the Stephan Ave. restaurants. It has plenty of normal foot traffic so there is no reason to avoid the place because of the area (but you are right as that side of the street is a bit of a junky thoroughfare)
    I've only been once and the emphasis appeared to be more on drinking that food.

    1. Decent ribs, brisket for Calgary. (It's not going to be anything close to the U.S.). Not a fancy place, but it's clean and decent. No need to worry about location, it's only on the edge of the "sketchy part."

      1. I went twice. I liked the brisket and pulled pork the first time I was there - it was a bit better than Big T's near McMahon. I also enjoyed the jack daniels wings. The garlic fries are not great (just fries and raw garlic!), but a friend from Texas assured me this is how they prepare garlic fries down there too.

        However, the second time I went, I had ribs that were so tough and dry, I could've done better at Tony Roma's.

        And Harju is correct, depending on the time of day, you might find people there mostly swilling beer and a loud band playing.

        I would recommend Big T's over Palomino. The food is at least consistent, and you're not eating in a loud bar. Booker's is an option too if you want to stay downtown, altough they seem to have more of a lunch menu (pulled pork sandwiches, hushpuppies, coleslaw, etc)

        1. I LOVE Palominos! It is casual, clean and cozy. The food is great! I love the garlic fries and especially the Ceasar Salad. Fresh, simple food. I would say one of the best in town. And I have been to expensive places with less quality in food. I totally recommend it for a casual dinner (or lunch!) and drinks.

          1. from what I have heard it is very hit and miss. Probably due to not enough turnover

            1. Fortunately, all my experiences there have been pretty good. While it's no comparison to the stuff in the US, for Calgary standards, Palominos is my favourite. I've been to Big T's a couple of times and was not a fan. At Palominos, I always order their garlic fries (lots of buttery sauteed garlic topped over the fries). My friend and I always ask them for extra garlic on the fries. And for an entree I always have their smoked 1/2 chicken. The chicken is very juicy and flavourful. The kansas pork ribs are pretty decent too. I've never had a problem with the service there. Mind you, I always go there for an early dinner on Saturdays (they are closed on Sundays) around 6 pm when it is still pretty quiet. I could see how service could deteriorate as the night progresses and the bands start playing.

              1. Lunch is a mostly business clientele, but I've found the food hit and miss. I'm a southerner who loves my barbecue and the first time I went the pulled pork was good (not great) and it's been downhill since (yesterdays 'cue, barely reheated) Ohhhh and don't even call those grits.... awful.

                1. as others have mentioned, don't worry about the location. i was there on friday, and i can still taste the garlic (well, almost) from the fries. having said that, i think it's a pretty decent place for bbq in calgary. top two even, lol. i know that's not saying much, but if you've got a craving, there's not much elsewhere to go. If you like live music, then you're in even better shape. we were there at night around 9, and there was a band upstairs playing decent old country, if that's your thing. Service is pretty slow. this has been consistent for all my visits, but seemed especially bad when i went there for weekend brunch.

                  1. Just ate at Palomino's -- the brisket was dry dry dry and the pulled pork flavorless. I think it's pretty much hit and miss. We've had better luck with Big T's but they're inconsistent as well.

                    1. As far as the location, are you kidding? Firstly, this is still Calgary. Secondly, Palomino's literally next door to a police station*.

                      Anyways, I hit Palomino on a fairly regular basis for weekday lunches. It gets busy, but the servers are actually quite good. The decor is one half try-hard, one half funky.

                      The 'cue isn't competitive with the southern US, but I've found it respectable and consistent -- that said, these days I usually get the gargantuan cheesesteak, and in my few opportunities to get really good barbecue, the only accompaniment I need for with the meat is a fork. I second the garlic fries, as well.

                      My summary is that I'll go there if I need barbecue, whereas when I need, say, Mexican, I just do without.

                      * There's a trial period for a police office based out of the Centre Street LRT platform, the block over from Palomino. It's not just 9-to-5, either.

                      1. As far as the location, are you kidding? Firstly, this is still Calgary. Secondly, Palomino's literally next door to a police station*.

                        Anyways, I hit Palomino on a fairly regular basis for weekday lunches. It gets busy, but the servers are actually quite good. The decor is one half try-hard, one half funky.

                        The 'cue isn't competitive with the southern US, but I've found it respectable and consistent -- that said, these days I usually get the gargantuan cheesesteak, and in my few opportunities to get really good barbecue, the only accompaniment I need for with the meat is a fork. I second the garlic fries, as well.

                        My summary is that I'll go there if I need barbecue, whereas when I need, say, Mexican, I just do without.

                        * There's a trial period for a police office based out of the Centre Street LRT platform, the block over from Palomino. It's not just 9-to-5, either.

                        1. Been there a couple times, and can say the same, pretty hit and miss. Had the brisket and pulled pork and it wasn't bad. Last time i went though i sat there for over 15 minutes before being offered a drink and a menu and then sat around for another 30 minutes before the waitress came and asked if i wanted another drink, never even tried to take an order. Needless to say i left and haven't been back in a while.

                          1. I have only been there 2 times and found the brisket dry and tough each time. Zydeco_mama had the ribs last time there and they seemed to have a weird coating on them and were bitter from being oversmoked. We both did like the garlic fries and the cheese grits were pretty good. We did find the service slow and indifferent.