Here at WJ we love some good pulled pork, and we’ve been there as large supporters from the very start of the BBQ Meat boom in London, but sadly not all can compete with London’s finest, and if we told you the new Porkys in Camden could, we’d be telling you porkys…
The problem I personally have with most of the American themed places popping up is how lazy and patronising they are. It is as if they purchased a Dummies Guide to American Food, filled the place with obvious Elvis & Johnny Cash posters, leave their Rock’n'roll classics compilation CD on repeat etc and then you’re then supposed to think everything is going to be authentic.
Sadly though, weather they have bought a special oven from American or not, it’s not quite enough. The Porkys burger, which consists of pulled pork, bacon and Jack cheese fails to mention a grave error- the bun is not only a supermarket contender but also overly toasted to the point where there is no chance you’re picking this one up (which makes no sense with soft meat) and the bacon is somehow beyond crispy (black). And just when we thought we might be being a bit harsh, we tried the sides. The Mac’n'cheese (title taken from the book mentioned above) was sadly not as thick and creamy as you would expect, and the chips could almost be used to make clothes pegs.
Also to mention is that you’re not going to find gooey over BBQ sauced meat here. What you might think is ketchup and BBQ sauce on your table is actually a watery equivalent, one where vinegar presides and the other BBQ flavours. These aren’t bad at all and actually added to the meal hugely but the shame was that without them the pulled pork could have aired on the dry side and when we first expected it to be ketchup we thought we had got that wet bit on the top no one wants if you don’t shake it first.
Topped with the lack of milkshake or smoothie options options on the menu, we went for the raspberry beer, which was like a no frills version of Belgo’s amazing equivalent (just 5mins down the road) we we’re seriously let down with Camden’s attempt to rumble with Soho’s best, which is a shame, because it is something lacking in the area (closest decent alternative probably being Byron) but standards have been set here in London and when you’re charging around the same prices, you have to be able to compete.
Those that are new to the pulled pork and BBQ meat world might think this place is ok, but for those wanting the best, we recommend checking out the far superior ‘Pit Cue’ around Carnaby St.
Tips to improve include cooking things less (no one likes hard food), thickening up the Mac’n'Cheese, telling people about the sauces hidden in ketchup bottles and a bit more cheese on the Porky’s burger.