Sweet Baby J’s may be a more appropriate name for this joint. The sauce was sweet, the greens were nearly candied, and the tea was downright syrupy. Even cut with half a glass of unsweet tea, this was liquid sugar that required a water chaser.
The meats were spared from a dose of sugar and got a good dose of smoke instead. The brisket slices had a good crust and a decent smoke line. The tender slices were moist and flavorful, if a little too fatty. The ribs were a tad chewy with an odd flavor created by being basted with sauce while being smoked with a combination of hickory, oak and pecan. The smokiness was there, but more time in the smoker could have added some tenderness and rendered the fat a little better. The spicy, dense sausage was incredible with a hefty amount of red and black pepper. The beef and pork mixture had a flavor similar to Italian sausage with a deep smoky twist.
Pulled pork is not usually found on a Texas BBQ menu, but this version was smoky and tender, piled high on a bed of pickles and onions and doused with the sweet sauce. The buttered bun tied this sandwich together, and it was quite good.
Out front are a bevy of smokers that vary from the tall rotisserie-style one pictured to a couple of offset steel smokers to the smoker housed inside a renovated camper. One of the owner’s friends was using the tall smoker to cater a prom dinner for his daughter and 23 of her friends. He looked busy.
The interior was sparse but homey, with wall murals painted by a local “artist.” Some of the smoke painted on the wall looked a lot more like Mr. Hankey than smoke bellowing from a fire.
Overall this joint is an interesting place to visit to get some distinctively flavored meats, and with a bit more time on the smoker, the meats could really be stellar.
(This review originally appeared on Full Custom Gospel BBQ.)