Being that I live (and now work from home) in Orange, I tend to drive around the city a lot. Most recently I had noticed that in the same location at the little strip mall where Scottie’s Smokehouse was originally there was a sign saying BBQ Opening Soon. The past couple weekends I had noticed someone out in front in the parking lot cooking away on a sidebox BBQ smoker. Today I decided to stop by and just happened to be fortunate enough to discover that Smokey Fred’s BBQ in Orange has officially “soft launch” opened. Smokey Fred’s BBQ is just a little hole in the wall BBQ joint that sticks to the basics, brisket, pulled pork, and ribs. Nothing fancy and nothing too far out of the ordinary beyond that, except for some killed small batch (once it’s gone it’s gone) chili. Fred got into the BBQ business by way of some volunteer meals he had made and being told over and over how good his meat was, so he decided to leave the solar industry that he was working in and try his hand at BBQ. Currently they are cooking all their meat out back in a sidebox BBQ, but soon enough they will be smoking inside with a larger commercial size smoker. Fred’s wood of choice is usually pecan, but he likes to use others when it calls for it.
So that’s enough talk I’m sure you’d like to see some of their really good BBQ.
Since this was my first visit and I like pulled pork I ordered the Lexington, a pulled pork sandwich served with cole slaw on it along with a mustard based BBQ sauce. It left a very good first impression with its solid flavors and good texture. The meat wasn’t overly smokey and had a good pull to it. The cole slaw didn’t stand out, but it also didn’t detract from the sandwich.
The house made baked beans include smoked bits of the flap meat that normally comes on pork spare ribs, it’s the perfect meat addition for the really tasty sweet beans.
After talking with Fred about our love of smoking meat he sent me off with a parting gift of his home made small batch chili. He said he has people coming from all over the county to get it again and again and honestly I can see why. This stuff packs a punch of flavor without being too spicy. It’s a very tomatoey based chili that will stain your shirts if you don’t watch yourself, packed with a ton of ground beef along with a smattering of kidney and pinto beans.
Since Smokey Fred’s BBQ has just opened I don’t really know what their hours are, but I’m going to take a guess that they are open from 11 AM till they run out of meat so if you want the best choice of meats and want to try their chili I recommend you get there early.
Smokey Fred’s BBQ
129 Collins Ave,
Orange, CA – 92867