One of my biggest gripes about working in Bothell has always been the lack of good restaurants. When I was working downtown as an intern, there were so many places to go try (though I was a little short on funds at that time). In Bothell there are just a couple restaurants and the café, or so I thought. The truth of the situation is that I really never tried that hard to look. If it wasn’t within my line of site when I drove in to work, then it didn’t exist. So, when one of my colleagues suggested we go to lunch at Larry’s Smokehouse, I was game; couldn’t be worse than the alternatives.
Larry’s is located in an area that if I didn’t know better would just look like a series of storage sheds. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve driven by a couple of times and never noticed it; not even the smoker sitting out in the parking lot. The outside décor is quite simple, a white awning covering the entrance and a Betty Boop statue (which seems out of place). Inside it isn’t a whole lot different with some older pictures and simple, clean tables. There are some display cases with various smoked items for sale. At the front is a counter where you place your order; no waitresses at Larry’s. It’s the type of place that would be featured on a show like Diners, Drive-in’s and Dives, not a place where the chef is on Iron Chef America.
On the way there, my co-worker told me that their smoked salmon was excellent. But, when I walked up and quickly looked at the menu, I opted for the ½ pulled pork sandwich lunch which came with chips and a side (I went for the slaw). It just seemed like the right thing to order. I also got a soda, which I was told to just grab out of the cooler. The whole thing came to less than $5.
We walked to the cooler, grabbed our sodas, and took a seat at one of the tables. It was only a couple minutes until our food arrived. The sandwich was definitely very good sized. The pork was covered in sauce with more on the side. The bread wasn’t the traditional bun that I was expecting, but more of a French style bread with a soft inside and crispy outside. When I took a bite, the sandwich was very flavorful. The sauce was sweet initially, and left a little bit of heat at the end. The pork was very moist, tender, and quite flavorful. The slaw was your basic cole slaw, with a sweet dressing and cabbage crunch, nothing too unique. I contemplated adding the slaw to the sandwich (Southern style), but since I was with a co-worker and not friends, I opted to save that idea.
For me, it was a very good lunch, full of unexpected flavor. The only drawback for me was actually the bread, as I prefer a bun instead of the crispy bread with my barbeque. But all, in all, I was definitely pleased and will definitely be back. And it gave me hope that there is good food to be found in Bothell, as long as I’m willing to go out and look for it.
Final Verdict – 4 stars