And so it is with Caboose, a little shack in Dray Walk off Brick Lane serving up smoked meats either in buns or boxes.
They were already a little in my bad books; I've tried several times to get down there only to discover they're not open, and they aren't always great about keeping you informed on Twitter. Finally, I got there and the hatch was open. I took several minutes eyeing the short menu before deciding that, what the heck, I'd go for the Derailer - a combination of 10 hour pulled pork and 12 hour rib of beef, and gosh darn it, I'd have cheese on it as well.
The guy before me had a similar idea but was told they were all out of beef because they'd had an event earlier that day. I almost flounced off in a fit of pique, annoyed at being deprived even when they were finally there for once, but Mother Clucker had too long a queue and I didn't fancy Orange Buffalo again so I just settled for The Fat Controller – pork on its own. Actually, I did add the smoked cheese. I'm not normally a pork and cheese proponent but seeing them melt it with a blow torch decided me.
The sun was out and I hadn't yet eaten anything that day so I sat on the curb and had my breakfast. And yeah, I liked it. It was a touch too sweet for me – probably as a result of the pork being smoked over fruit wood chips, and being served in a sweet brioche bun, with quite a sweet BBQ sauce. It came with pickle but that was marooned in the very middle of the bun – I would have liked the vinegar tang with every bite. I craved some hot sauce on it. The cheese on it, however, was pretty good – I hadn't been sure I would like cheese with pork but I was converted.
It wasn't incredibly filling either, but then, it was only a fiver.
So yeah, I enjoyed it but it's not one of the big-hitters in the pulled meat and bun arena. Maybe the Derailer or the 3:10 to Yuma (beef on its own) would have set it apart from the crowd but I can only judge it on what I had. Pleasant enough. I'd go back if in the area (and if the Rib Man wasn't around), but I wouldn't make a trip for it all on its own.