Tasty Tuesday–Beast Craft BBQ: Pork Belly Pastrami

Belleville’s Beast Craft BBQ has daily specials, as you might expect from a restaurant, and I’ve reviewed many of them in the years they’ve been open. But every now and again, they have something extra special, something so unique that it’s only around for a day or two, and you have to jump at the chance to get it before they sell out. Over the weekend, they offered such an item, a pork belly pastrami sandwich topped with dill cucumber salad, on sourdough, plus fries:

So, here’s the thing. When the owner of Beast messages you to let you know about the special, and tells you to get there early to try it, you really have to listen to him. So even though Ryan was out all day on Saturday (with our only vehicle), he found some time to swing by and pick one up for me.

That was a good call.

It’s obvious that I’ve liked everything I’ve tried at Beast, and have many favorites. This sandwich was extra special, though. The meat just melted in my mouth. It was so tender and so flavorful, and then when you add in the crunch of the cucumber salad…it’s definitely now one of my Beast favorites! I don’t know if they’ll ever bring it back, but if they do, I’m certainly going to have to get it again, and this time I know that I need to be there when they open, because I’m pretty sure Ryan got some of the last of it they had on Saturday, and that was at lunchtime!

Tasty Tuesday–Smokin K’s BBQ & More

Apparently reviewing BBQ restaurants in the Metro East is my thing now…

We ate at Smokin K’s BBQ and more in Millstadt last week, because our church’s youth group was working there for a fundraiser. Like most places around here, the outside is fairly unassuming, although I did appreciate the smoker out front.

The inside is bright and colorful:


The decor is mostly all of the awards the Smokin K’s BBQ team, 4 Smokin’ Butts, have won, and there are a lot of them!. There are trophies, ribbons, and other various prizes everywhere! Very impressive!

On to the food. I ordered the pastrami reuben and fries, and it was amazing. Definitely the best pastrami I’ve ever had. I liked that the fries were beer battered, and I took the suggestion of one of the owners and sprinkled them with Smokin K’s special seasoning, which was also good. (I also had the 4 Smokin’ Butts Bloody Mary, and it was fantastic…best Bloody Mary I’ve ever had. Very unique presentation, and it was just the right amount of spicy!)


Ryan tried the slider trio, which included pulled pork, brisket, and pastrami, with a side of beans. He also loved the pastrami, and said the other meats were good, too, but was a little disappointed with the buns, which were somewhat flimsy. He also like the beans, even though they weren’t BBQ beans like he was expecting. That’s ok, though, because he really likes baked beans, and he thought Smokin K’s did a good job of making them!


We didn’t try any of the desserts, but it sure was fun to look at all of the options in the pie case!


Smokin K’s isn’t as conveniently located near us like Beast is, but you certainly won’t have to twist our arms to get us to go back there if we’re looking to go out to eat when we’re in Millstadt!

Tasty Tuesday–Beast Craft BBQ: Pastrami Hash

I’m mentioned Beast’s amazing pastrami before. Sucker that I am for pastrami, I had to try the pastrami hash when it appeared on the menu, and it didn’t disappoint!

The hash is made with pastrami and brussels sprouts (!!!), and served on top of fries on top of rye bread. The whole thing is then smothered in smoked hollandaise, with the standard Beast pickle slices in top:


I loved this Beast creation just as much as you would expect. One word of warning, though…this was an extremely salty dish–make sure you have a beverage to go with it!

Tasty Tuesday–Beast Craft BBQ: The Big NY

Last Tuesday was one of my favorite holidays…St. Patrick’s Day. You can imagine how thrilled I was, then, when I learned that Beast had a special “Big Sammich” in honor of the day…the Big NY!


Pastrami brisket, fries (on the sandwich!), pastrami burnt ends (yes, that’s apparently a thing!), swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and an amazing beer mustard, all on rye bread. It was kind of like a Reuben, and kind of like something else…whatever it was, it was DELICIOUS. I’m a sucker for pastrami in the first place, and beer mustard, and Reuben sandwiches, and Beast for that matter, so it was almost guaranteed that I would like it. That didn’t make me appreciate it any less, though!

Here’s hoping pastrami makes its way onto Beast’s menu again, because they did it right!