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Best Damn BBQ joints in Texas or anywhere....... Login/Join 
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I'm in search of the perfect BBQ joint, Texas or otherwise.......over the years I've eaten in many of the well known ones (Arthur Bryants in KC comes to mind) but I'm "scientifically" (yeah....right) comparing them now and trying to keep notes.....just for example I've eaten in the famous Cooper's in Llano several times and while I found it to be adequate, I wouldn't call it a shrine to BBQ.......I'd hate to rate it on my new scale but from memory I'd give it a B+. Scale has letter grades like in school, but 3 levels of Plus or minus and is purely subjective (that is, it is my opinion but I consider anyone's input who is eating with me if they have a clue about Q)......for instance a REALLY good BBQ would be B+++.....I judge by ordering ribs and brisket......and factor in how much I like the sauce but the meat, sauceless is the main grading factor. I'd really enjoy posts from people who are similar BBQphiles. OTOH if you like McRibs and think that's BBQ, please just read and don't post. Wink If anyone wants a "guide" to places to check out you can find Tx Monthly's "50 best BBQ places in Texas" from last year. So far, I'm not very impressed with their grading but it is a starting point.

Here's the ones that I've visited recently since I became serious about the search:

1) Rudy's in Waco, Tx, (multiple other locations) just E of I-35 overall grade B (not rated in 6/08 Tx Monthly article but Rudy's is often mentioned in favorable terms by Qphiles. I'm not sure where the original is, but this is not it.)

Brisket was excellent, tender with good smoke line, ribs were poor, one of them tasted freezer burnt and in general were way below the quality of the brisket. I think this could have been my getting a bad batch but that's what I got. Take away the bad rib and I'd probably give this a B+ or even B++. Very friendly staff, nice place. Sauce typical tomato based good but not particularly distinguished.

2) Buzzie's in Kerrville, Tx Overall grade B-
(Tx Monthly score 4.5 on 5 pt scale)

Brisket was okay. My son liked it much better than I did and he is not a complete newbie to BBQ. Ribs were better meat of two, good but not great. Sauce was again, typical tomato based good but nothing special. This joint was fairly highly rated by Tx Monthly, I don't agree.

3) Schoepf's BBQ in Belton, Tx (about 1/2 mi W of I-35) overall grade B+ (Tx Monthly score 4.5)

Brisket was boiled or cooked wrapped in foil for tenderness and smoked a bit right at end.....I don't like this way of cooking unless it is managed very carefully for smoke flavor but it does produce a tender brisket......it was fair but not great due to lack of smoking time. Ribs were very good, best of these 3 IMO. Sauce gives it the edge of these 3 so far. I liked it, tomato based but with a bit more than average of sweet and distinctly vinegary. Very good AND somewhat DIFFERENT......my son didn't like it, but I think he's inherited his mother' aversion to sour.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Now here's a subject near and dear to my heart (and blood pressure!).

Kreuz (that's pronounced kroitz to all the non-square-heads out there) in Lockhart. If that place ain't heaven, I'll wait...this is what bein' a carnivore is all about.

Try the Cooper's in Mason; they've got it all over the one in Llano (not that that makes any sense). Try their cabrito (if there's any left!); they know their way around a goat.

Damn it...now I'm hungry. Thanks Fat Cat, I really needed this!

Mark


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"I always take care to fire into the nearest hillside and, lacking that, into darkness." - the late Dr. Hunter S. Thompson
 
Posts: 591 | Location: Coleman County, Texas | Registered: 05 July 2003Reply With Quote
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Lockhart is near the top of my "gotta go" list for Kreuz' and Smitty's. We were coming back from a hunt W of Kerrville and I didn't want to spend the extra time to go over to Lockhart.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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The owners of Kreuz and Smitty's are actually brother and sister...and have been feudin' ever since their father left son the business and daughter the building (where Smitty's is now). Leastways that's the way I'm rememberin' the story...they finally parted ways entirely a few years ago.

Been a while since I was thru Lockhart myself; reckon it's time for a "pilgrimage"?

Mark


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"I always take care to fire into the nearest hillside and, lacking that, into darkness." - the late Dr. Hunter S. Thompson
 
Posts: 591 | Location: Coleman County, Texas | Registered: 05 July 2003Reply With Quote
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Clarks BBQ on 377, Tioga TX. Gotta try the dry ribs. and save room for the Coconut pie.

I have made the drive a couple times from Dallas, but it is a haul.

Dang, I am hungry.
 
Posts: 6199 | Location: Dallas, TX | Registered: 13 July 2001Reply With Quote
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It is basically the same distance for me if I go to Dallas via I-30 or 82W and drop down via McKinney so Tioga is not all that far out of the way. Clark's will be a must stop on the next trip. Thanks for the tip.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Though only a couple of my favorites made the list--it is interesting.

http://www.texasmonthly.com/2008-06-01/feature10.php


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Posts: 4071 | Location: TX | Registered: 03 March 2009Reply With Quote
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Why don't you name your favorites? So many Q joints so little time, help us sort them out......


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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There used to be a place called Luther's in San Antonio that had excellent BBQ. Unfortunately not enough people knew about it or something because they closed after several years. As it's been better then 19 years since I've been to Texas my input would be out of date.

However the best Q I know of comes from my own smoker Wink Big Grin.

Ken....


"The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but that they know so much that isn't so. " - Ronald Reagan
 
Posts: 5386 | Location: Phoenix Arizona | Registered: 16 May 2006Reply With Quote
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Nothing wrong with claiming yours as the best, one thing we can do with home cooking is cook it the way we prefer.

It would be interesting to know how many BBQ joints there are in Texas. The Tx Monthly article claimed they visited 341 but I'm guessing there are at least two or 3 times that many. BTW by BBQ joint I mean a place that makes most of it's food sales revenues by selling BBQ and related items, not someplace that sells just BBQ sandwiches along with hot dogs, etc like 7-11s, for instance.

What someone needs to do is a BBQ joint, a Bar, and a Motel all in one spot, that way after you've pigged out, drunk 3 or 4 too many beers or drinks, you could check in and take aspirin in the morning, if she has any....... beer


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by Gatogordo:
Why don't you name your favorites? So many Q joints so little time, help us sort them out......


New Zion- Huntsville
Shep's- Palestine
Hard 8-Stephenville
Hwy16 -San Saba
Mikeska- Belton
(Original) Bodacious- Longview
Hungry Cowboy- Spearman
Cowpokes- Pearsall
Saddle Partners- Marfa
Kunkel-- Johnson City
and of course--my own Cool


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Posts: 4071 | Location: TX | Registered: 03 March 2009Reply With Quote
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Thanks, I'll add them to my check out list......Longview is only 90 miles from me, I can make that work into some kind of drive easily.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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4) Coleman's BBQ in Clarksville, Tx (604 N. Martin Luther King, phone 903 4275131) overall rating B++ (see description) (Tx Monthly score 4.0 on 5 pt scale)

Wow, this was some good Q! I only live about 25 miles from the place but their hours are THEIR hours and I'm rarely in Clarksville when they are open, plus it is located a bit off the main drag and you just don't think about it as you drive by, so this is (hang my head in shame) the first time I've tried their Q. It won't be the last.

At any rate, this thread inspired me to run over there....and I do mean run......looked up and it was after 5 and they close at 6 or when they feel like it......#1 Daughter and I jumped in truck and took off, getting in door at about 5:30.....they put the "closed" sign up 10 minutes later.

I guess I liked this so much because it is the style of E Tx, N La Q that I grew up with, real smoke, real wood, no pre-cooking, no electric burners.

Clarksville is the county seat of Red River County, which is the NE Tx equivalent of a third world country. Coleman's was started by Dwayne (sp?) Coleman's father 36 years ago and is a local institution. Dwayne, who owns the place now (I suppose, didn't ask), is a somewhat rotund 50ish black man that really knows his Q.

As mentioned, they have kind of odd hours for a food service business.....M 11-3, T-Th 11-6, F 11-7, and closed Sat and Sun. They also close when they feel like it, as mentioned they put the closed sign up today at 5:40.

Daughter and I order a pound of sliced Brisket and a pound of pork ribs. The Brisket was the star but the ribs were also quite good. I think, that if we had been there earlier in the day, the overall rating could easily have been B+++ but by this time, the ribs had probably been out since mid-day and were not as prime as they could have been. Brisket has good if somewhat thin smoke line, was nearly cut with a fork tender (which is REALLY tender for smoked brisket with no pre-cooking or wrap) with a thin but distinct smoke line and good bark with a heavy smoke but not burnt flavor. Yummmmmm..... Ribs were just a bit dry on outside, solidly smoked and good. Sauce was really outstanding, much different than almost all other Tx Q sauces I've had so far......you just don't ask ingredients, but it is a watery thin semi-clearish tan sauce, with meat drippings (I think), vinegar, brown sugar, black pepper and whatever else in there. Vinegar and sugar are undertones, not overbearing.....EXCEPTIONAL to my taste. I debated a while whether to give this place two pluses or 3 and finally decided I'd be conservative and settled on 2. Daughter is not a big eater normally but between the two of us we ate ALL of the brisket and had one rib left and she probably ate more than I did. Being the prince that I am, I ordered 2 pounds of brisket for rest of family to carry home (they were at #2 daughters softball practice).

Dwayne uses straight hickory for his wood, only thing electric is a damper which controls heat levels all night.....most briskets are cooked about 15 or more hours.....I didn't think to ask about the ribs. He fires it up when he quits for day, puts the meat on, and takes it off sometime the next morning.

Seems odd but this is a really different style of Q than most of what I've had in Central Texas, not like another planet, but more like another region which, duh, it is. Also, my comments on the sauce are, obviously, to my taste and someone who is just as fanatic about Q as I am might not find it to be to his tastes. Hard to describe but sort of a Q equivalent of au jus sauce. It is different, but the meat is without doubt excellent. I wouldn't call it wonderful but really quite good. I'll be better able to evaluate it after a few more stops on the BBQ trail. That sounds kind of odd for someone who's been eating BBQ for almost all of his 60 years but it is different when you're eating for grades/comparisons. Most of the time, you just think, well, this sucks, it's ok, it's good, or it's great and don't really try to analyze why. I'm not claiming I'm any good at it, but I'm doing it the best I can.

Finally, Coleman's reputedly has excellent homemade on sight tamales. They were out by the time I got there as they were the only other time I tried to buy some a few years back, so I am reporting this based on word of mouth (pun intended). Tamales are about $10/doz.

I dunno why you'd be in Clarksville, but if you're there when they're open Coleman's is certainly worth a stop.

Update: June 8, 2009 My whole family and I revisited Coleman's today and ordered 2 pounds brisket, 2 pounds ribs, and 1 pound pork......It was a very close call, and I couldn't argue with someone who rated the pork better, but I think the sliced brisket was still the star followed by the sliced pork (which we didn't have on the first visit) with the ribs running a fairly distant third. They're good, but are full sized pork ribs and just aren't quite as good as the brisket and pork. Rating remains same, but well worth a visit if you can catch them open and are in the area.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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There's a little place in Eagle Lake TX in an old gas station.

Wow!
 
Posts: 3427 | Registered: 05 August 2008Reply With Quote
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That would be Austin's BBQ which is on the Tx Monthly list, score 4.5. Haven't been there YET. Wink


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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5) D & J BBQ and Deli in DeKalb, Tx (not rated by anyone, has some decent local support but that just goes to show what some locals don't know) phone 903 667 0335 overall grade B---

I knew better, I had been here before a while back and was pretty sure I was right the first time, but since #3 daughter had a softball game in town, and we picked up a couple of our kid's friends, in the interest of science (and to give the joint a second chance), I took the group to D & J's which is what amounts to my hometown Q. The owner is a really nice guy who cooks with hickory but for much of the cooking time the meat is wrapped in foil for tenderness. I don't like this method of cooking unless the person doing it is a Q magician, very few are. It is quite difficult to balance the wrapped tenderness time with getting enough smoke flavor and exterior BBQ texture, however, as previously discussed, you wind up with some very tender Q.

Since we had a bigger crowd than usual for my tastings (myself,wife, and 5 kids), I was able to taste a wider range than my usual brisket and pork ribs, but that didn't help the score any. Pork ribs were really excellent (even tho not my ideal type of Q), very tender (see above) with a good dry rub seasoning on it. Brisket was just barely okay at best. Tender, somewhat overcooked, not much smoke flavor, and very little bark. Pulled pork was really no better. Sauce was poor, IMO, overly sweet tomato based, tasted basically like a sweetened up Kraft's original. Pinto beans were very good. Besides the pound of ribs and 1/2 pound of brisket (I only ordered 1/2 pound based on prior experience here) I order as the basis of any of my Q evaluatoins, several "plates" were ordered. I wasn't impressed with the quantity on any of them. Smoked chicken plate was particularly noteworthy for being deficient in quantity of chicken, and it was dry as well.

Bottom line, if you're hungry, it's adequate, and the ribs are darn good (order a pound with a side if you want, SKIP THE PLATE option), especially if you can smuggle some decent Q sauce in, but they are very edible as presented sauceless due to the rub. If the sauce was better and just scoring the ribs it would be about a "B" or even better but passing a portion of a test won't get the degree, not in my Q school. Not worth driving out of your way at all. Sorry about that local Q but I calls 'em as I tastes 'em.

Update 2014: D&Js has been closed for a couple of years, divorce. Confused


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Luling City Market in Luling. Great barbeque, excellent ambience. Anywhere you can get Big Red with your barbeque is special.


Mike
 
Posts: 19725 | Registered: 03 January 2006Reply With Quote
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Luling CM is rated 5.0 by Tx Monthly (I think 5 out of the 50 tied at 5.0 but Snow's in Lexington was supposedly the best). Haven't been there, but looking forward to it. I appreciate and enjoy ambience but unless I'm fighting rats in and out the door it doesn't affect my score, I'm grading how they Q and that's all. OTOH if two places were a mental tie and one was a dump and one was nice, then obviously I'd give the preference to the nicer one.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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The Smoke House in Linsay Texas on Hwy 82 between gainesville and nocona- brisket good -ribs great- the german sausage is wonderful- wash it down with a red beer (beer&tomato juice) whole bunch of old german farmers sit there with a pitcher- go on to Muenster stop at fischers meat market they make various sorts of sausage/wurst the meat is great too= try the jalapeno/ cheese summer sausage -the german sausage is great- get some struedel at bayerkroft bakery - go on diet -in Ft.Worth try sammie's or angelo's bbq
 
Posts: 660 | Registered: 10 April 2009Reply With Quote
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6) Bodacious Bar-BQ 904 N. 6th St. Longview, Tx (recommended by Duggaboye in this thread and they must be doing something right since there are 10 locations in that general area of E Tx)
overall grade B++

Due to a family member's death, we had to attend a funeral in Central E Tx so stopped in a couple of Q joints coming and going.

I mistakenly thought this was the original Bodacious (which was the one recommened by Duggaboye) but it is the second store they opened (my mistake but we were on a schedule and I didn't have the spare time to relocate). However, it was quite good, Brisket was better than average with good smoke ring, good char, and good flavor. Negative was it was just a bit dry. The ribs were exceptional, well done with a great rub on them that really required no sauce. Which is just as well, since I grade their sauce as adequate but firmly in the middle of the road. They sell it as their own, but I'm not at all sure that it isn't Cattleman's with a small bit of extra spice in there (available at Sam's for about $12/gal, which is a darn good commercial sauce widely used, either straight up or as a base, by Q joints).

Talked to one of workers, all we met there had a good friendly Texas attitude, and she said all meats were cooked individually at each location using hickory and post oak. What that really means is you've got 10 locations with 10 potentially different Qs with a similar style. It seemed pretty obvious that they do not wrap their meats but I didn't ask.

The ribs are not exactly baby back rib size, I don't think, but they are not full size pork ribs either. I'll have to ask my butcher friend if there is some kind of middle smaller grade, perhaps off the ends.

Decor was kind of Texas county style with a touch of hunting lodge thrown in.....kind of funky but fun. No beer at this location, don't know about any others (let me add that I'm fairly sure of this but it was 11 AM and I didn't want one so just didn't see any and assume they don't have it, Texas liquor laws would piss off the pope)

Good eating, could easily have gained a "plus" with a bit better sauce or maybe just a different brisket....but that's how I see it for now. I'll stop into some more of the locations if the opportunity arises.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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7) Country Tavern FM 2767 and Tx Hwy 31 (north side about 1/4 mile from 31) about 8 miles W of Kilgore and the intersection of 31 and 259. (Tx Monthly score 4.5/5.0) overall grade B--

Let me preface this by saying I grade Q joints according to how I personally percieve their BBQ. I don't really have a "mob" factor, meaning I don't sit there and think, "Well, I don't care for this but obviously a lot of people are showing up here to eat it" and change my opinion based on that observation. Since I'm primarily doing this in Texas so far, I tend to have a Texas "standard" in mind and if the Q deviates from it, there needs to be a good result, not just a difference. Specifically, I'm not fond of sweet meats, except at Christmas, and I'm not fond of sugary BBQ sauces either. Back to the review......

Man, when I walked in here, I thought I had found BBQ nirvana, at least to my ideal......Basically set up like a Texas country honky tonk, there is a full length real bar at one end of hall with bar seats, which, as far as I can tell only serves beer, both container and draft. In front of the bar is a pool table and to the right of that (the rest of the area) are a fairly large number of tables and booths filling with lots of customers which is usually a very good sign......like the rubber tree ant I had HIGH HOPES......but it was not to be.

Waitress was friendly and service was reasonably fast and efficient.......even tho I had a couple of hours drive in front of me, I ordered one Shiner Bock draft for the occasion which was by far the best thing I had in there, except for the ice cream. Daughter and I ordered standard pound of ribs and pound of brisket topped off by blackberry cobbler ala mode for dessert.

Ribs (again, nearly baby back size if they weren't) were coated in some kind of sweet glaze/rub that I found pretty unappealing (see above). Brisket was average minus but acceptable. Sauce was quite sweet tomato based as well, with just a hint of spice. Well below average sauce, although not the worst we've had. As I said, waitress was friendly, but didn't have a clue about their Q or how it was done. Since it was more or less dinner hour and the place was filling fast (obviously a lot of people think more of it than I do)I let further questions about wood, cooking go since I'd would have had to go find someone there who had something to do with the Q process.

I was really disappointed but if someone (and plenty do apparently since the place has been open since 1939) likes sweet glazes on their ribs and average brisket then it might be much higher on their list. I'm sure the good beer bar can't hurt either. Assuming I magically fell in love with sweet on my Q, I guess I'd give it a B or a B+, even discounting the sweet, the ribs were just about decent IMO, nothing special.

BTW I didn't think the cobbler was very good, but I think they use Bluebell on it, so I can recommend the a la mode part.

For me, the search goes on, because this ain't it.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Can't take much more of this. You guys are ruining my day. I am sitting here, with drool running down my chin, and living in Bar B Que never never land.

I can't remember names but the one mentioned in Kerrville comes to mind, another one in a small town at the south end of the King Ranch, another in Leakey, and one just west of San Antonio along the I-10.


"When you play, play hard; when you work, don't play at all."
Theodore Roosevelt
 
Posts: 4263 | Location: Pinetop, Arizona | Registered: 02 January 2006Reply With Quote
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Bill:

Come on down to Texas, we passed at least a dozen "no name (meaning not on any lists)" joints yesterday, 1/2 of which looked very interesting. The search is fun but even I am near to overdosing on Q for a few days. As I said earlier, I'd love to have other people's analysis (recs are happily accepted as well) but it would be fun to read how other people actually analyze a Q joint on a current visit. It's fun, but to do it well, it's not as easy as you'd think and requires some basic knowledge of various styles of cooking and sauces. I'm not claiming I'm doing a good job but I think I am consistent. Obviously if I went to the Carolinas I'd have to change my standards since their main meats and sauces are entirely different from Texas'.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Here's a very good book by Robb Walsh on Texas BBQ with lots of good restaurant recommendations and recipes:

http://books.google.com/books?...v=onepage&q=&f=false


NRA Life Member, Band of Bubbas Charter Member, PGCA, DRSS.
Shoot & hunt with vintage classics.
 
Posts: 9487 | Location: Texas Hill Country | Registered: 11 January 2002Reply With Quote
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Buzz & Ned's BBQ in Richmond, VA
Smokey Pig in Ashland, VA
Georgia Pig in Brunswick, GA
 
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the bad thing about BBQ in the southeast other than they don't seem to know cows exist is the that vinegar/mustard/catsup stuff is not a sauce seriously I tried the pork and mutton they were good but that sauce!! God Bless Texas & Real Bar-b-que
 
Posts: 660 | Registered: 10 April 2009Reply With Quote
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For real BBQ, you gotta go to the SE!! You Texicans are just trying to cover up your mistakes with a lot of tomato sauce. I doubt that you will find any place in the SE that barbeques MUTTON. yuck. Never heard of it.

Nobodies mentioned Stubbs in RR. Only place I've ever been where you could hear live Gospel music, drink beer and eat BBQ on sunday morning. Smiler
 
Posts: 1287 | Registered: 11 January 2007Reply With Quote
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the mutton was in west virgina I thought that was part of the SE. we do mutton in Texas (sorta)- cabrito. and y'all probably put beans & macaroni in chili
 
Posts: 660 | Registered: 10 April 2009Reply With Quote
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For a number of years I lived only a few blocks from the Goode Company Barbeque "1" location on Kirby in Houston... I have to admit I enjoyed many an enjoyable meal there.

Time with friends at the picnic tables / the smell of the mesquite in the smoker / the sounds of ol' timey music...

“You Might Give Some Serious Thought to Thanking Your Lucky Stars You’re in Texas”


Wink


-Gotta agree with Gatogordo ... "So many [good] Q joints so little time..."

http://www.goodecompany.com/goodeHistory.aspx

http://www.texasmonthly.com/food/onthemenu/goode.php
 
Posts: 450 | Registered: 20 August 2005Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by stillbeeman:
For real BBQ, you gotta go to the SE!! You Texicans are just trying to cover up your mistakes with a lot of tomato sauce. I doubt that you will find any place in the SE that barbeques MUTTON. yuck. Never heard of it.

Nobodies mentioned Stubbs in RR. Only place I've ever been where you could hear live Gospel music, drink beer and eat BBQ on sunday morning. Smiler


I'd really prefer that this thread not get into a "our" Q is better than "your" Q pissing match. I've eaten a few times in BBQ places in Ga and Va and found them to be different but good. Haven't had the opportunity to try the Carolinas yet. When I'm in Fl. which used to be quite often, I tend to eat seafood or Cuban food.

As a general statement of my preference, I grew up eating brisket and pork ribs and prefer the heavier smoking style of the Miss. Valley which in general includes Kentucky, W. Tenn, Ark, La, Miss, (prob Ala but haven't tried any there), Ok and TEXAS.

I'm not saying Texas style Q is the best (even if everyone knows it is Wink ), it just suits my tastes. I am more than willing to hear about different Q joints that serve a different style of cooking, preferably with reviews.

Please refrain from disparaging comments unless you're reviewing Q.


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When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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The Branding Iron in Wichita Falls. Their brisket is very tender. Smoke is very light, not overpowering. Best coleslaw anywhere. Good potatoe salad. Big fries with the skin on. Beans are not my style, reminds you of Ranch Style beans from a can. Their bbq sauce is not that good to me, others say it's good.

Another little quirk, their pickles are the best I've tasted. Served cafeteria style.

Good atmosphere, been around about 30 or 40 years. They use mostly oak wood.


Craftsman
 
Posts: 1485 | Location: North Texas | Registered: 11 February 2001Reply With Quote
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8) Clark's Outpost BBQ 110 Hwy 377 Tioga, Tx (recommended by Wendell Reich on this thread and supported by numerous local Qphiles) overall rating C+

I bought a shotgun off of Gunbroker from a seller in Ft. Worth, seemed like as good an excuse as any to drop by Clark's and maybe another Q joint on the trip. Luckily I avoided Cabela's which is just down I-35 from the seller's place of business since they have a sale shotgun there that would really dent my reserves.

At any rate, dropped kids off at school and left for Tioga. Arrived about 30 minutes prior to their opening and sat working Sudoku in my truck for few minutes until just before they were scheduled to open at 11 AM. About that time a local who had driven about 30 miles pulled up and asks when they open? She was a gorgeous middle aged blonde Texan with a voice laced with a Texas Southern accent that would sweeten honey. We had a long conversation over Q, which didn't help it any, and if I was 10 years younger and less happily married (I'm very happily married but not dead), I'd have followed her home like a lost puppy, but I digress.......I report this because it was BY FAR the high point of the visit. Can't say enough about Texas friendliness.

Joint inside looked like a typical Texas Q joint, antique tin ceiling tiles, photos on walls of horses and celebrities, and substantial grease layering on all of the above. In short, homey.

Because of the local rec above, I had very high hopes but it was not to be. I ordered a pound of ribs and a pound of sliced brisket (standard test order). Since it was early and we were the only ones there, I asked the waitress what wood they used....to cut to the chase after going thru 3 people I finally got a sort of "hickory?" answer from one of the cooks. Maybe they do, but they're not endangering any forests. If there was any smoke flavor on the ribs or brisket it would need a detective to find it.

Ribs were bland, no smoke, and very little real flavor from whatever rub they used. I tasted two, then tried the brisket, and finally ate one more rib thinking, "I must be missing something here." I wasn't. I think I could take someone who had zero knowledge of cooking, tell them a few details and have them make better ribs in a oven, no smoke. Don't get me wrong, they were edible, but not up to contemporary or anyrary Q standards.

Brisket was fair at best, no real char, no smoke flavor and had that moist, mushy texture which comes from wrapped cooking. Whether they wrap it or not, I don't know but I'd bet they do.

Sauce was actually poor. It was tomato based, somewhat sweet, with basically no spice flavors, with a kind of weird after taste which was almost like a bourbon taste but not as pleasant. I found it to be edible, but not good at all.

Per rec, I ordered coconut pie. They were out due to demands of Memorial Day crowds so I settled on chocolate pie. It was decent, remarkable for the 4 inch high meringue piled on top but at $4.50 a slice I thought it was overpriced for what you got. Showy but not up to the show.

Finally, this Q was the most expensive I've had. I suppose being close to the Big D must allow them to charge these prices but the meat prices were substantially higher than most places and most places are not cheap.

Let me point out that besides the aforementioned blonde I asked several other customers their opinion and they all said it was great. They must have lived in the city too long but that's why they have different flavors of ice cream, to suit different tastes.

After eating and putting the rest of the Q in a to-go box to inflict it on my family, I drove around the establishment to check it out and there are no outside pits, and no sign of any wood around this joint. It may all be inside the numerous buildings but it's a strange way to BBQ. Lots of successful Q joints are now using natural gas or propane but none of them are proud of it as far as I know.

I'm not trying to disparage anyone's choice in Q, I'm just calling it as I see it. The only reason it has a C+ is because the food was fair and other people seem to have a different opinion of it than mine. Personally I wouldn't go back there if they were giving it away, much less at their inflated prices. Upon reflection, let me clarify my last statement, the food is not BAD, it is just very ordinary and barely Q as well and I think there are multiple better places to eat than here.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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9) Scholl's Bros. Bar-B-Que 1528 Lamar Ave, Paris, Tx (Lamar is Business Hwy 82 and Scholl's is about 1 1/2 miles W of E side loop towards downtown) (Tx Monthly rating 4.0/5.0) overall rating B--

After the poor results of the morning visit I nearly skipped this place but figured it can't get much worse and since it is only 50 miles from my home I knew I was going to do it sometime, so why not now? The review in Tx Monthly really had me thinking I was going to hate it because they reviewed it as very sweet tasting. I didn't find this to be true. Tx Monthly (probably accurately) says they cook with mesquite and pecan in a gas cooker. Guy behind service bar said pecan, but I'm not sure he knew all, so to speak. Pecan is a plentiful local wood, very closely related to hickory but seems to produce a bit less "bite" in my experience. Paris is a long ways from mesquite country so if they use mesquite it is probaly sparingly. Service was friendly and unlike most places they don't sell their ribs by the pound but by the rack, 1/2 rack $8, full rack $14.....since I was already on full for Q for the day, I ordered a 1/2 rack and a pound of sliced brisket.....didn't weigh 1/2 rack but it must have weighed at least 12 ounces and consisted of 6 fairly large and trimmed on ends ribs. Fairly unusual but not all that bad of an idea, they wrap the meat in plastic food wrap (like saran), I suppose to preserve freshness and moisture, removing it as they cut it to serve.

Ambience is minimal, pretty much like old style cafe, nothing really notable.

In fact, the ribs were exceptionally good but they had no real resemblance to Q in my opinion. They had the faintest of smoke flavors and were melt in the mouth tender, probably from wrapped cooking or possibly from exacting heat control with gas, not sure which, or both. Truly good eating, but do not meet my definition of Q ribs. But I'd go back and order them again, Q or not.

Brisket was acceptable but not noteworthy and had little smoke flavor (must have been my day for bland Q styles).

Sauce was kind of standard tomato based fairly sweet but not cloying, little spice base, okay but nothing extra.

Condiment section was somewhat remarkable for having what are similar to NY deli style pickles, probably made from slicing fresh cucumber and letting it soak in dill pickle juice, much tastier than it sounds. Katz's Deli in NYC has very similar pickles. Also had jalapenos, onions, cheese, and various relishes, etc.

I gave this a relatively low grade because it is not very much like real Q but it is very edible and worth a visit if you're in the area, stick with racks of ribs IMO. If you just graded the ribs as good eating, not Q, I'd give them a B+++.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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If you go through downtown Dallas, try Sammy's and let me know what you think.
 
Posts: 8773 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 24 April 2004Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by Charles_Helm:
If you go through downtown Dallas, try Sammy's and let me know what you think.


Charles:

Will do for sure. I intend to make a day or two visiting the better known Dallas Q joints in the not too distant future. The real problem is traffic/culture shock. My "home" town has really grown in the last few years, it has two, count 'em, 2 red lights now.....here, if you can see more than about 10 cars that aren't parked we consider ourselves in a traffic jam. And I don't live in town, so 10 cars is way too many for my tastes. A few minutes of Dallas bumper to bumper traffic, freeway or otherwise, makes me yearn for the countryside. So going to multiple locations in one day in Dallas is not high on my list of fun things to do.......but I'll get there.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Don't know what you think about the franchise type places- Dickey's -Bryan"s etc. but it seems if they are any good they don't seem to last long-in mesquite there were two I can think of Famous Dave's and Smokey Bones. they both had well smoked dry rubbed meats and 3-4 kinds of sauce.Smokey Bones place had some of the best ribs I have had I was sorry to see them go. the little old Sonny Bryan's at Mockingbird & Harry Hines was good even Julia Child ate there they had her picture on the wall
 
Posts: 660 | Registered: 10 April 2009Reply With Quote
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I'm not an expert on Q economics but I suspect the main problem with multiple locations is increased costs (more layers of management, rent, etc) and less intense oversight by the original location owners, possibly combined with a lack of understanding of all the multiple laws, taxes, insurance costs, etc he will encounter. A man who can cook great Q, either in his backyard, at an old gas station, or where ever can probably make a good living doing that, almost regardless of where he is located (it's gone now but there was a storied spot on Hwy 82 between Avery and Clarksville truly out in the middle of nowhere that did a booming business for years and their closest neighbors for miles were all cows), but being able to successfully run a hands on Q joint doesn't by any means translate into the much higher levels of abilities to run multiple locations while maintaining a consistently good product.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Gato',

There are a couple places down near Alvarado that always worked for me. CassStevens located on FM 917 between Mansfield and Alvarado--Gotta take the "bypass" and go into Lillian. Then there is the BBQ place on business 35W south. Almost miss the place if going more than 30 mph. On the right just before the RR underpass, can't think of the name. I'll get the name of the place.... With enough notice I can be in Alvarado and would be more than happy to show my favorite places. Then go to Texas de Brazil for dinner. None finer! Got friends in Alvarado with award winning registered Texas Longhorns. I know how you like longhorns!



Sasquatch


We Band of Bubbas
N.R.A Life Member
TDR Cummins Power All The Way
Certified member of the Whompers Club
 
Posts: 2958 | Location: South Texas | Registered: 15 January 2008Reply With Quote
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I don't get to that side of the DFW area much, but if I come up with a reason to go by there, we'll see if we can get together. Without figuring exactly, it is probably 3 1/2 hours drive from me or a bit more. Brazilian restaurant sounds good, especially if they've got Brazilian girl waitresses.


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Here's a thread you might take a look at.

I've eaten BBQ from some of the places in Taylor and Lockhart they mention, and I know my grandfather thought the sausage from Luling was the best.
 
Posts: 8773 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 24 April 2004Reply With Quote
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