Last Saturday night I was invited to taste "long & low" smoked ribs by South African Chef Ossie Mashiyi-Veikkola. Naturally, I could not resist. It had been a particularly harrowing week and I was really looking forward to one of my favorite pastimes, which as you know is, tasting fine food and drinking wine with friends.
We arrived at The Thinking Hut where the dinner was being hosted. First of all, allow me to comment on this super cool locale. Formerly a horse stable and now a "creative co-working space", I think they have one of the most beautiful gardens in Amsterdam, wild, dreamy, large, nostalgic . . . I wish there were a swing.
After a very warm welcome by Timo, Ossie's partner who handles the front of the house, we were lead to the garden with our lovely chilled white wine to view the final moments of our ribs in the smoker (above right). Chef Ossie had been preparing the ribs for over six hours! From that moment on I knew it was going to be delicious. I could tell by the loving attention to detail and quality. Finally, the ribs were ready and we looked on as steaming silver foil packages were gently removed and allowed to open and breathe. They smelled amazing! We traipsed back inside in anticipation.
What followed was a pile of ribs on a plate with a piece of bread, served with two of three choices of sides (I had coleslaw and potato salad, but beans were also on offer) AND the never-before-heard-of shot of Bourbon with "pickle juice back" which are meant to be downed one after the other followed immediately by chomping on a rib. The combination apparently creates a smokey caramel sauce in your mouth. I did it! It was oddly reminiscent of Jack Daniels. However, I preferred my ribs with the South African Shiraz that had been served, which was perfect.
The food was fabulous. We ate every morsel and drank all the wine and ate all the cheesecake. We went home full, happy and intoxicated by the whole experience. The only thing I wanted more of was ribs! We hope Bulelani will one day offer bigger portions. Perhaps a choice of regular or LARGE plates? Double orders? Basically, we want more ribs!
Plating the ribs while Timo explains the whole bourbon pickle juice sequence.
|Chef Ossie and his beautiful smile|
If you have a hankering to gnaw on some ribs, you should definitely follow Bulelani Smoked BBQ Restaurant to keep track of their next pop-op place. They also offer a specialty salmon and dishes for vegetarians and vegans. Great people, Great food. Thank you Timo & Ossie for an amazing meal! **** Recommended
|The Thinking Hut|