Smoke Daddy Rhythm and Blues, which opened in the summer of 1994, changed hands in 2005. Mike and Doug Dunlay, the cousins behind D.O.C. Wine Bar,Dunlays on the Square, and Dunlays on Clark are now running the show.
All the meat at the Smoke Daddy is slow-smoked in an authentic pit-barbecue oven. The signature Smoke Daddy BBQ sauce adds a savory touch. Live jazz and blues acts appear seven days a week, providing a perfect soundtrack for enjoying barbecue. Bookings are generally small combos, including some excellent traditional jazz fare, with regulars like Chicagobound, Expansion Project and the Urban Hog Wranglers. Bluesman Rockin' Johnny, Lenny Linn and Dave Specter have also played here. This is a small venue for music, and thus the live experience is laid-back and intimate. The dining room is lit low, keeping the atmosphere cool and comfortable. This is a good place for non-meat eaters as well, with a popular vegetarian barbecue sandwich. The restaurant is planning to expand and add brunch hours in April.