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Smokey’s has been operating in the Springs for about two years, and most of the time, customers can spot their big, black trailer on Circle Drive near its intersection with San Miguel Street. The absence of big, marketing firm-designed branding suggests the food’s legit.

The mac n cheese, though, doesn’t impress so much, not particularly cheesy, though the noodles are fine. We also order pork rib tips and brisket. The former shows Smokey’s meat to be smoky indeed — the tender, moist protein picks up plenty of smoke flavor, which we can’t say for every barbecue spot in town, and that’s great. Unfortunately, whatever’s in their rub forms not a bark, but a powdery coating that lacks flavor and isn’t pleasant in texture. Spicy barbecue sauce adds more smoke, big onion, heat and spice flavors, which helps with the contrast. The brisket needs no such augmentations or qualifying statements, as it is just dead tasty and more than worth pulling over for.

Chopped fatty brisket comes with a perfect smoke flavor, stupid tender, powerfully meaty and damn impressive. With a little of that hot barbecue on a bun, it’s a slam-dunk sandwich, and frankly, it only wants that little bit of sauce so the comparatively dry bun doesn’t overwhelm it.

Griffin Swartzell is a food reviewer and contributor for the Colorado Springs Indy. This Colorado Springs native joined as an intern in early 2014, freelancing until they joined the staff full-time in late 2015.