All you need to know about this 480-square-foot electric-blue joint is that there are no rules. (That, and $10 goes a long way.)
Smalls’s barbecue melds Southeast Asian and American Southern influences, which means pulled pork sandwiches ($8.50) get slathered with bacon mustard, and elote ($3.25) comes with Japanese mayo. Filipino-style St. Louis ribs ($14 for a half slab) don’t come with sauce, but they’re not supposed to. Here, smoked brisket bibimbap ($10.50) with bulgogi sauce and a fried egg just makes sense.
Space is as hard to come by as booze, but claustrophobic thirsty diners can head next door to Lizard’s Liquid Lounge, order a beer, and call Smalls for delivery. And weekdays between 4 and 7 p.m., pool games there are free. 4009 N. Albany Ave., 312-857-4221