Week Four at the new office, and I discovered to my absolute delight, Smoque has added a new location, just a few blocks away, at Chicago's Revival Food Hall.
From the Chicago Revival Food Hall's website - "Operated by Chicago hospitality collective 16 On Center, Revival Food Hall is an all-local dining concept spotlighting the best of Chicago's acclaimed culinary scene under one roof. The massive, 24,000 square foot marketplace is located in the heart of Chicago's central business district, on the ground floor of The National – a restoration of a historic 1907 Daniel Burnham-designed 20-story building. This cornerstone of The Loop neighborhood opened in 2016, and boasts 15 fast-casual stalls featuring many of Chicago's favorite neighborhood restaurants in a grab-and-go setting, plus a handful of all-new concepts debuting from several acclaimed Chicago chefs."
Now, in my humble opinion, the Revival Food Hall is a really neat concept, but the reality is an absolutely miserable dining experience. Tables are few & far between, as is any seating whatsoever. People wait & argue over standing-space with tiny counters (much more narrow than the food trays), and Lord help you if you'd like napkins or silverware. I wasn't expecting linen tablecloths & white-gloved wait staff, but your local high school cafeteria has a better ambiance. At least they'd have seats.
...and for those "in the know", Smoque has, hands down, the best Q in the Chicagoland region. Real Urban is "good", don't get me wrong, but it doesn't hold a candle to Smoque! First featured on Food Network's 'Diner's, Drive-ins & Dives' a decade ago, Smoque has been doing it 'Low & Slow' since 2006, with no slack in quality.