The newly opened barbecue spot with the funny name tucked away on Warm Springs and Tenaya obviously specializes in Tennessee-style cookery. I’ve eaten most of the major regional styles of American barbecue—Kansas City, St. Louis, Texas, Memphis—but I had no idea what Eastern Tennessee meat-smoking was all about.
Tennesseasonings’ website claims the region pulls influences from neighboring states (the Carolinas, Alabama and Georgia) but what I tasted there was a mild style of barbecue that’s meat-forward and not reliant on sauces. The dry rub is more subdued, so diners can focus on the flavor of the pulled pork and smoked chicken.
Plate 2.2 ($17.50) features two meats and two sides, and it’s enough to feed two people. Daily specials rotate and might be anything from smoked ham to smoked bologna. I tried the off-the-menu smoked meatballs, plenty big and juicy, a nice take on a familiar favorite.
Mac and cheese and green beans are standout sides. The former is, as the menu states, “ooey gooey,” while the latter benefits from being sautéed with onions and bacon. Banana pudding ($5) might be lighter on banana flavor than vanilla, but it’s delightful nonetheless. Combined with crumbled shortbread, it’s a perfect way to cap off a unique dining experience.
Tennesseasonings 7315 W. Warm Springs Road, 702-342-1260. Wednesday-Sunday, noon-8 p.m.