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Jan 12, 2012 03:49 AM

Smoke and Bones - Derby

New BBQ place opened up a few months ago in Derby.
They are more of a southern food stop as opposed to strictly a BBQ stop, but the food is quite delicious.

The highlights are definitely the sandwiches and po' boys, mostly because of the pricing to size ratio. I'd venture to guess there is almost a full pound of meat on their sandwiches.

Brisket is as it should be. Ribs have a nice smoke and come off the bone with little effort.
Burnt ends are a stand out if you like them.

They have 4 sauces you can get on just about everything. Carolina Mustard is by far the best of the bunch with the Memphis Vinegar coming in a close second.

They also server some BBQ inspired breakfast items and they also have a small but good selection of micro brews. Sitting down with a good beer and a pound of brisket is always enjoyable.

Here's the website for directions and what not.

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  1. hmm, not far from River BBQ up the road

    1. I drive by there every day and always think about stopping in - now it sounds like I definitely should! Saw on their truck that it's a David Grant operation, which in my book is a pretty good sign.

      5 Replies
      1. re: harrie

        Grant as in the Briccos and Grant's?

          1. re: kattyeyes

            Oh, he's local to the Valley, been here a long time, and does a good job. His stuff isn't avant garde or anything - very basic catering, but I've been to numerous events he's done, and the food's always been solid. Perhaps a sad commentary that that's all it takes to make me happy, but I've also had some pretty nasty catered food, so.....

            Here's his website -

            1. re: harrie

              The last time I had his catering at work it was really awful.

              1. re: javaandjazz

                Geez, that's a shame. Like I said, I've been spared (apparently).

      2. Is this where the old car dealership was or somewhere near that stripmall on 34?

        1 Reply
        1. re: cheereeo

          Healey used to have Subaru next door back in the day and I believe Deerfield Meat used to be in the old bldg. There used to be a porn store in the spot years ago that made waves in Derby.

        2. I got a brisket sandwich and fries today. You're right about the sandwich, it's freakin' huge. For me, too huge - the bun could not hold up to the assignment, and I ended up knife and forking it. On the one hand, leftovers are a nice thing if you like the food; on the other, if you're eating this in public, it gets really, really messy.

          The brisket itself was fairly fatty - the nature of the beast, I guess, but mine at home comes out pretty thoroughly rendered. The meat was acceptable to good in taste and tender; the Kansas City Sweet sauce was also adequate, but didn't stand up all that well to the whole sandwich. (In my mind, Carolina Mustard sauce goes on pork, and Kansas City = beef, hence the choice of sauce.)

          The fries were standard crinkle cuts, nothing special - and again, they give you a boatload of them. Service was super-friendly, and my order was ready in good time.

          Smoke and Bones gives you a huge amount of food for the money. If that's your thing, you'll love it. The food itself was not offensive, but will not make me forget the old Stick to Your Ribs in Stratford (and Little Piggy in upstate SC). STYR is no more, so S&B will do in a pinch; despite the lukewarm tone of my experience, I'll go back, most likely to try the pulled pork or a po 'boy.

          Oh, and they're in the old Deerfield Meat (and porn shop) space, across from Marie Antoinette's bridal shop on Route 34.

          1. I was in New Haven last night around six thirty and wanted to bring a friend to S & B, but couldn't remember what hour they closed. We tried calling information, but the operator didn't have the number! Big time screw up at the phone company.

            I love just about every thing about Smoke & Bones. The food is very good. I don't usually bother with chicken when I go a BBQin', but it is my favorite thing here. I love the collards, adore the mashed potatoes. And they have one of my all-time favorite beers, Allagash white. I get the chicken as a way of being sensible, health-wise. But I guess I am undermining it with the potatoes. Still, the salads are tasty too.

            The staff could not be nicer. Blues is always playing on the sound system. The location had been a big meat locker, then a porn shop, and you can't get more gritty bluesy than that! The building, which seems like it was yanked from next door to Arthur Bryant's and plopped down in Derby. But seriously, valley towns look like the kind of places that should have good BBQ. The logo is the niftiest thing I have ever seen, a flaming pig skull & crossbones, which evokes pirates and bikers and zombies all in one go. I actually bought a hat, I liked it so much. And if that wasn't niftiest enough ambiance, the building is smack dab next to the train tracks and the train has been known to stop there for take out! Beat that!

            The fried fish stuff seems pretty good, but I can only eat so much fried fish. I'll leave it to other folks who are all about such things. I do love the idea of a po' boy with a regional spin. And there is a regional spin here. The beans owe more to Boston than to Texas.

            The valley is becoming a BBQ destination! What S&B shares with Riverbank, which is up the road in Seymour, is good food, lovely ambiance and really nice people. We're talking about folks who are pouring their hearts and souls into these businesses, and I am all about trying to support them. Ah, don't you love showing community spirit with a napkin tucked under your chin?

            And if all of this wasn't reason enough for a field trip, you have Roseland Pizza near by as well. Just don't hit all these destinations on the same day. You'd explode.