Having spent the bank holiday weekend climbing mountains in Wales, it only felt justified to stop off on the way home for a big meal. Although it feels as though Smoke Stop is in the middle of nowhere (plonked on long road home), it looks grand, appealing and modern.
Plain and Keeping it Sane - Maybe I was playing it too safe with this option but I will explain later. 100% Angus quarter pounder, served in a brioche bun with all your normal frills, it was a good burger. However, it was slightly on the dry side and the patty a tad overcooked. And this is where I feel I played it safe (next time I will definitely experiment with more flavours).
I upgraded to sweet potato fries for an extra £1.50, and they were wonderful. The perfect mix of crisp yet fluffy, these could be some of the tastiest sweet potato fries I've had in a long time. I also had slaw served with my meal, but I passed that onto my friend. Although I don't have a photo, I also got Mac 'N' Cheese Balls to start, which at £5.50 for 3 seemed a bit expensive, but they were very nice indeed.
For a bank holiday afternoon, I thought it may have been slightly busier than it was, but this just meant the service quicker for us. Our hostess (most of the staff appeared to be young women) changed halfway through our dining experience, which meant we had a quick succession of 'how is your food?'; just let me eat please! Overall though, everyone was very friendly.
On first appearances, this place is a grey and black, isolated building which doesn't strike you as a restaurant. However, when you enter, you're greeted with wooden decor, retro wall art (I think Spongebob might have been playing on one TV), sporting memorabilia, and there was a clean, modern feel to Smoke Stop. No complaints here.
The burger was £11.50 (which includes the additional £1.50 to upgrade your fries), which is superb value for money. A lot of places I go to will charge at least £13 just for the burger, with fries on top. However, as I said earlier, a few more M&C Balls might have been better.
ALL THE BURGER YOU COULD NEED.