Revisiting John Brown Smokehouse

A luscious assortment of barbecue from the relocated John Brown is Dish #43 in our countdown.

Welcome to 100 Dishes to Eat Now, the tasty countdown leading up to our "Best of 2012" issue. Tune in every day (weekends, too!) for a new dish from the Fork in the Road team.

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A mess of 'cue: (from lower left going clockwise): rib tips, pork belly, pulled pork, beef brisket, turkey, lamb sausage, and burnt ends

A month ago, barbecue newcomer John Brown Smokehouse -- channeling the great barbecues of Kansas City, with a few Austin flourishes -- did a strange thing. It moved from a cozy location near the N train southwest to another, more industrial, neighborhood in Long Island City.

The new building and its awning look nearly the same as the old. But the new L-shaped interior is twice as big, with a separate bar (the old place was BYOB) and a sunny back courtyard, easily quadrupling the seating.

When a crew of friends visiting from Sacramento and I arrived this past Saturday, the place was hopping with employees and customers -- even though pit master and owner Josh Bowen was away at Pig Island for the day as one of the featured pig-cookers. We ordered up a big tray of 'cue, including six items that had been highlights of the previous menu, and one we'd never tried before (turkey).

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The bill of fare in chalk -- no specials today, possibly due to the absence of the pit master

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