Daniel Vaughn's Profile Photo

Daniel Vaughn is the author of The Prophets of Smoked Meat: A Journey Through Texas Barbecue, the coauthor of Whole Hog BBQ: The Gospel of Carolina Barbecue, and the barbecue editor at Texas Monthly. He has traveled the world sampling smoked meats at over 1,800 barbecue joints, most of which are in Texas.

1745 Articles

BBQ|
February 26, 2014

Pitmaster Interview: Vencil Mares of Taylor Cafe

Owner/Pitmaster: Taylor Cafe; opened 1948Age: 90Smoker: Wood-fired offset smokerWood: Post OakVencil Mares (pronounced like a group of female horses, not the planet) normally sits at the end of the bar just inside the side door of Taylor Cafe. For this interview we went into the only place in the restaurant with air conditioning

BBQ Joint Reviews|
February 25, 2014

The Cattle Exchange

Canadian, Texas is out there. In the already secluded Texas Panhandle, it stands alone anchoring the northeast corner. Amarillo is over a hundred miles away, and the next town of any consequence is two hundred miles east in Oklahoma City. With so little to visit nearby, Canadian has

BBQ|
February 24, 2014

Smoked in Texas: TJ’s Smoked Salmon

When you think of smoked salmon, it might be thin slices of rosy meat that come to mind. That’s the smoked salmon common on deli menus or vacuum-packed on a grocery store shelf which is generally a cured and cold-smoked product. Jon Alexis at TJ’s Seafood Market in

BBQ|
February 21, 2014

Maybe We Should Celebrate the Chopped Beef Sandwich

Ah, the chopped brisket sandwich: it’s as ubiquitous to Texas barbecue joints as pump jacks are to the Permian Basin. They’re so commonplace and ordinary, I’ve even criticized them in the past as something far inferior to a thick slice of smoked brisket. But meat on a bun was once

BBQ|
February 20, 2014

Houston BBQ Festival 2014

The second annual Houston BBQ Festival is coming on Sunday, April 6th. The line-up this year is mostly familiar if you attended the inaugural 2013 festival, but some of the new faces include Feges BBQ, Oak Leaf Smokehouse, Pappa Charlie’s Barbeque, and Baker’s Ribs. There’s also a

BBQ|
February 20, 2014

BBQ News: 02/14 – 02/20

– An ad was posted on Craigslist offering $15/hr to someone willing to wait in line at Franklin Barbecue during SXSW.– The 2014 James Beard award nominees were announced yesterday. Daniel Delaney of Delaney Barbecue in Brooklyn was nominated for Rising Star Chef of the Year,

BBQ|
February 19, 2014

Interview: Billy McDonald of Mac’s Bar-B-Que, Part II

Owner/Pitmaster: Mac’s Bar-B-Que; Opened 1955 (1982 in current location)Age: 60Smoker: Indirect Heat Wood-Fired PitWood: HickoryBilly McDonald is a second generation pitmaster at Mac’s Bar-B-Que in Dallas. Last week we ran the first part of the interview with Billy that featured his father’s career in barbecue. It wasn’t until they moved to

BBQ Joint Reviews|
February 18, 2014

Spicy Mike’s Bar-B-Q Haven

Mike Havens was done being an electrician. He had a lot more fun making barbecue for his crew, so he got a bigger smoker. That steel offset smoker sits out front by the road, but it’s mainly for show unless Havens has a catering gig. The workhouse now is a

BBQ|
February 17, 2014

BBQ Photographers: Ken Goodman

Every month we’ll bring you a profile of a photographer who has captured the people, the food and the spaces that make up the world of barbecue.Ken Goodman – New York City, New YorkMy name is Ken and I’m a freelance photographer based in New York City specializing in food,

Food & Drink|
February 14, 2014

A Dictionary of Charcuterie . . .

Bresaola A beef eye of round, salt-cured and aged for several months.Coppa Marbled pork neck muscle, salt-cured and aged for several months.Lardo Pork back fat rubbed with salt and aromatics and aged for several months.Lonzino A whole pork loin, salt-cured and aged for several months.Mortadella A finely

BBQ|
February 14, 2014

Texas’s Best BBQ Sandwiches

At Prause Meat Market in La Grange, there is a green paper sign right next to the barbecue counter. It reads “Sorry We Do NOT Make Sandwiches.” It’s a reminder to customers that this is a meat market where meat—smoked or raw—is sold by the pound. If you want a

BBQ|
February 13, 2014

BBQ News: 02/07 – 02/13

– Thrillist provided this guide to regional barbecue styles in the US. I do give them credit for realizing that Texas has more than one style, but their description of North Carolina barbecue and claiming that Memphis is known more for pulled pork than ribs makes the whole

BBQ|
February 12, 2014

Interview: Billy McDonald of Mac’s Bar-B-Que, Part I

Owner/Pitmaster: Mac’s Bar-B-Que; Opened 1955 (1982 in current location)Age: 60Smoker: Indirect Heat Wood-Fired PitWood: HickoryThe McDonalds have been a fixture in the Dallas barbecue scene since 1949. Mac’s has moved around a bit, but Billy McDonald has no plans to leave his current spot on Main Street just outside Deep Ellum. He sat

BBQ Joint Reviews|
February 11, 2014

Pickles BBQ & Icehouse

I saw a flight of “flavor infused” pickles on the menu, and I was immediately powerless. I had to order them. I was dining alone during lunch at this sports bar/live music venue/barbecue joint hybrid in a suburb north of Fort Worth. Olympics curling was on the television in my

BBQ|
February 11, 2014

Ten 50 BBQ is Coming

Ten 50 BBQ is under construction in Richardson, just north of Dallas. You may have seen the sign along the Hwy. 75 service road north of Arapaho (at 1050 N. Central Expressway) and adjacent to the Arapaho DART station. Construction is underway for the major renovations to the existing

BBQ|
February 10, 2014

Jimmy Kimmel in Austin

Jimmy Kimmel and his sidekick Guillermo Rodriguez came to Austin for some SXSW scouting over the weekend. Kimmel will be taping his popular late night show in Austin during SXSW, and he was doing some advance barbecue scouting. Saturday began with Franklin Barbecue followed by Micklethwait Craft Meats

BBQ|
February 7, 2014

The Antebellum Chef in Texas

Michael Twitty was cold, and his pig wasn’t much warmer. He was six hours into an eight hour cook, and the February winds were whipping across the top of the hill at the French Legation in Austin. A makeshift pit about the size

BBQ|
February 6, 2014

NBBQA Conference Coming to Texas

The annual conference for the National Barbecue Association is being held right here in Texas this year. In just a month, hundreds of barbecue enthusiasts will gather in San Marcos, Texas to eat and talk barbecue. The conference is a strategic combination of education, trade show,

BBQ|
February 6, 2014

BBQ News: 01/31 – 02/06

– Wayne Mueller announced at an event in Houston that he’s searching for the right location in Houston for a second location of Louie Mueller Barbecue.– Ronnie Killen plans to open his new barbecue joint in Pearland on 2/11. He has high hopes of course, saying “It’s probably going

BBQ|
February 5, 2014

Interview: Bill and Francene Barton of Neely’s

Twins Francene and Geraldine Neely from the Neely’s Facebook page.Owners: Neely’s, opened 1927Age: 66Smoker: Wood-fired steel offset smokerWood: HickoryNeely’s in Marshall, Texas is famous for being very old and for serving a Brown Pig sandwich. It’s by far their most popular menu item, but of course Bill wants to remind you that people

BBQ|
February 5, 2014

Aaron Franklin, Author

Pitmaster, pit builder, television star, dad – these all define Aaron Franklin of Austin’s Franklin Barbecue. By next year you’ll also be able to call him an author. Not only was his new television series with KLRU announced two weeks ago, but now comes a

BBQ Joint Reviews|
February 4, 2014

Virdinski’s Rub Shack

Amarillo can be a tough place for barbecue purists. Chris Virden is trying hard to make good barbecue at the three-month old Virdinski’s, but he can’t always make it the way he’d like to. In addition to his dozen years working for a local steakhouse, Virden is also a serious

BBQ|
February 3, 2014

Super Bowl Debut for Taylor Cafe

 I didn’t expect to see Vencil Mares make his Super Bowl debut last night, but there he was with his red apron on sitting at his usual spot. It was quick, but right there at the 0:35 mark of a Chevy truck commercial, a rancher transporting his

BBQ|
February 1, 2014

Austin BBQ Explosion

Sixty-six years ago on January 29, 1948, rush hour in downtown Austin was given a jolt by an explosion. A small barbecue joint called the West Sixth Street Barbecue & Market was left in shambles. The news was reported as far away as Sweetwater where the snippet in the February

BBQ|
January 31, 2014

The Best Method for Reheating Barbecue

The barbecue you eat can’t always be fresh. Maybe grandma sent you a brisket in a care package. Sometimes you might even have some leftover ribs. So, what is the best method to reheat it? While eating around the state I know that even in the hands of a microwave

BBQ|
January 30, 2014

BBQ News: 01/24 – 01/30

– Barbecue catering circa 1954 in Wilson, NC:My buddy just sent me a photo of his grandfather cooking 155 hogs in 1954! #BBQ #tarheelnation! pic.twitter.com/s6beoZ8dgD — Tyson Ho (@ArrogantSwine) January 17, 2014 – “A 300,000 year old hearth unearthed in…Israel suggests that the

BBQ|
January 29, 2014

Interview: Allen Prine of Prine’s BBQ

A newspaper clipping on the wall at Prine’s BBQ of Allen Prine and his late father, Harry Prine Jr.Owner/Pitmaster: Prine’s Barbecue, opened 1925Age: 61Smoker: Wood-fired brick pitWood: OakLike many third generation pitmasters, Allen Prine was a reluctant one. He had grander plans than working for dad, but now he

BBQ Joint Reviews|
January 28, 2014

Gas Monkey Bar and Grill

At four month old Gas Monkey Bar and Grill, I thought I was walking into a made for T.V. joke where barbecue was going to be the punch line. Muscle car makeover maestro Richard Ray Rawlings started in the business world with an advertising and printing firm in Dallas. He

BBQ|
January 27, 2014

Pit Mitt

It all started with a glove company wanting some promotion. They offered to send me some heat resistant gloves if I’d just write a blog post about them. When I asked instead for a way to purchase them online, they directed me to Amazon. At almost $36 per pair, these

BBQ Joint Reviews|
January 27, 2014

Delysia/Salt Lick Truffles

A few years ago a group of barbecue aficionados met up for a pow-wow at Louie Mueller Barbecue in Taylor. We wanted to share stories and some great smoked meats, and one of the attendees brought in some contraband dessert. It was homemade ice cream made with Dr Pepper flavored

BBQ|
January 24, 2014

Franklin Barbecue T.V.

Aaron Franklin of Austin’s Franklin Barbecue is getting a TV show. If you’ve enjoyed the BBQ with Franklin series on Youtube, then you’ll be happy to know that there’s a lot more coming. KLRU produced the popular web series, and this year they’ll shoot ten episodes with Franklin

BBQ|
January 24, 2014

The History of Smoked Brisket

What you know about the history of smoked brisket in Texas is probably wrong. People have been eating brisket since the first pits were dug in the earth, but only by a sort of default: it was standard practice to cook whole animals for the big community celebrations, which means

BBQ|
January 23, 2014

BBQ News: 01/17 – 01/23

– The Arby’s Smokehouse Brisket Sandwich has been the most successful new product in the company’s history.– The Plano location of Lockhart Smokehouse had plans to open in December. They had some delays, but things look to be nearing completion:The essentials… pic.twitter.com/P7m2UjqYAC — Lockhart SH –

BBQ|
January 22, 2014

Interview: Bryan Bracewell of Southside Market

Photo courtesy of Southside MarketOwner: Southside Market, opened 1886Age: 38Smoker: Wood-fired rotisserie smokers and wood-fired brick pitWood: Post OakMore than eight decades after it opened, Ernest Bracewell bought Southside Market in Elgin in 1968. Bryan Bracewell is the third generation of the Bracewell family to run the joint, but he

BBQ Joint Reviews|
January 21, 2014

DBQ

Editor’s note: The name of this joint has been changed to DBQ since this article was published.Kyle Lewallen started his barbecue catering company while still a junior at Texas A&M. A few years later he bought a food trailer and parked it just a block away from campus. He couldn’t

BBQ|
January 20, 2014

BBQ Photographers: O. Rufus Lovett

Every month we bring you a profile of a photographer who has captured the people, the food and the spaces that make up the world of barbecue.O. Rufus Lovett – Longview, TexasMy first barbecue photograph involvement came a few years ago when food writer Robb Walsh and I were on

BBQ|
January 17, 2014

What I Learned at Brisket Camp

The director of Foodways Texas, Marvin Bendele, asked me to come and lead a couple of panel discussions at the organization’s annual Camp Brisket, held last weekend at the Rosenthal Meat Center on Texas A&M’s campus. And even though I was presented

BBQ|
January 16, 2014

BBQ News: 01/10 – 01/16

– It was the week of Austin BBQ guides. Here’s a great one coming from Burger Mary all the way over in Australia. It includes most everyone, but John Mueller Meat Co. is a noticeable omission.– USA Today provides a similarly styled Austin BBQ Guide.– Brisketman also

BBQ|
January 15, 2014

Interview: Joe Capello of City Market in Luling

Pitmaster: City Market in Luling, opened 1958Age: 67Smoker: Wood-fired brick pit and a gas-fired rotisserie smokerWood: Post OakIf you’ve been to City Market in Luling, chances are you’ve seen the hard-hat clad Joe Capello. If their doors are open, then he’s probably there working the pit like he’s done for the last few

BBQ Joint Reviews|
January 14, 2014

Lenox Bar-B-Q

I walked through the front door, or at least I thought it was the front door. I was part way through it, when I turned around to walk back into the parking lot to make sure. It was definitely the front of the building, and this was the only door,

BBQ|
January 13, 2014

Southside Market Expanding to Bastrop

Bastrop, Texas is known as the “Heart of the Lost Pines,” but it will have a little piece of the Sausage Capital of Texas inside the city limits by year’s end. Southside Market owner Bryan Bracewell has announced that he will build a new outpost of

BBQ|
January 10, 2014

Fargo’s Pit Unveiled

Alan Caldwell, the pitmaster at Fargo’s Pit BBQ in Bryan, has been making great barbecue for fourteen years. And for all of those fourteen years, he has denied people access to his pit room. When he denied my first request to take a look at his pit, in 2010, he

BBQ|
January 9, 2014

BBQ News: 01/03 – 01/09

– Louie Mueller BBQ in Taylor will be closed on Mondays for a couple of months:To restate… We will be closed Sundays and Mondays only from 1/13 thru 3/3. We will be open Tues-Sat normal bus hours. — Louie Mueller BBQ (@LouieMuellerBBQ) January 7, 2014 –

BBQ|
January 8, 2014

Interview: Erik Mrok of Lenox Bar-B-Q

Owner: Lenox Bar-B-Q, opened 1946Age: 56Smoker: Wood-fired rotisserie smokersWood: Pecan and OakErik Mrok is mad, and with good reason. He took over a legendary barbecue joint in Houston that had been around for over fifty years. Just ten years later he had to watch a good portion of it get demolished to

BBQ Joint Reviews|
January 7, 2014

City Market (Schulenburg)

If I had it my way, City Market in Schulenburg would have a warning sign on their barbecue menu: “Pit in use only on Saturday, microwaves the rest of the week.” You see, first and foremost this is a meat market. Making sausage (including weiners) is their biggest business, on

BBQ|
January 6, 2014

Smoked in Texas: Smoked Sturgeon Headcheese

In the video above, chef John Tesar of Spoon in Dallas raises the smoked-filled glass dome to reveal one of his signature dishes. It’s a headcheese made of apple wood smoked sturgeon. The presentation is dramatic, but the that’s only the beginning. The smokiness of the fish is deep. It

BBQ|
January 3, 2014

BBQ Anatomy 101: Pork Shoulder

A quarter century ago Isaac Tigrett brought the Southern-style pulled pork sandwich to Texas. The Hard Rock Café founder from Jackson, Tennessee, opened a Dallas location in 1986, and in the following year the Dallas Morning News wrote that he “has trotted the pig into steer territory, offering the

BBQ|
January 2, 2014

Benefit for Kenny Hatfield

UPDATED INFO on the benefit for Kenny Hatfield: Super Scramble at the Beeville Country Club; Saturday, January 4thTournament Info: As most of you know, former Beeville resident Kenny Hatfield was diagnosed with throat cancer recently.  He has already undergone surgery, but has a long, tough road in front of him.  We wanted to

BBQ|
January 2, 2014

BBQ News: 12/20 – 01/02

– Happy New Year, or did they run out of hickory?pic.twitter.com/wf4rgxtM3m — Burns Original BBQ (@BurnsOriginalBB) December 31, 2013 – Between Disney World and Disney Land, they’ve sold two million smoked turkey legs in 2013. They all came from Yoakum Packing in Texas.–

Magazine Latest