If you stalk the upscale barbecue restaurant Smoke on Facebook (not that I do), you noticed they recently posted a come-hither pie photo along with this post: “Three words: Pie for dinner. Even better when it's our mescal key lime pie with meringue as high as an East Texas hairdo!” The picture spoke a thousand words to me, all of which were “Pie. For. Dinner.” Come supper time (after I finished Googling "East Texas hairdo"), I picked up my brother and bee-lined to Smoke’s newish digs in Plano. We may be grown-ups now, but that’s not going to stop us from getting into trouble together.
We grabbed a couple of seats at the homey-looking bar. Since we were already making one unhealthy decision, why not throw booze on top of it? I ordered us a couple of margaritas, but I couldn’t remember what they called their version. “Ah, the Woodshed?” the bartender asked. “Yes,” I confirmed. “Sounds like a place you go to get whoopins,” I said, glancing at my guilty-looking brother. She pointed to a large barrel jar on the bar top, indicating that the plank of cedar floating in the tequila imparts a woody flavor to their margarita. “It might give you a run for your money,” she said, and she was right. The tequila is the central focus of the drink, but fresh lime juice and agave add a complexity and balance that you won’t find at a standard Tex-Mex joint.
The Woodshed makes the perfect companion for Smoke’s mescal key lime pie, but drink too many and you’ll forget that’s what you came for. Try hard not to forget. You’re going to want to feast your eyes and your palate on that giant shark fin of meringue so fluffy and towering, it seems impossible to transfer from pie to plate. Underneath, a tart, citrusy custard with tangible bits of lime zest is anchored by a buttery, salty graham cracker crust. Yes — this is the pie meals are made of.
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Mom’s not going to be happy if she finds out about this. If she does, we’ve already conspired to ply her with margaritas ’til she forgets to take us to the woodshed.