Barbecue Inn is a beloved restaurant in Houston, but not because of its barbecue. Ask a local where to find the best fried chicken, chicken fried steak, or fried shrimp—oh, the fried shrimp—and the seemingly unlikely name is likely to come up. I first ate there years ago with J.C. Reid, the Houston Chronicle’s barbecue columnist. He avoided the barbecue completely. The fryers are so much more legendary at Barbecue Inn than the smoker that he didn’t think the decision required an explanation.

“There’s a jillion joints here in Houston for barbecue,” Barbecue Inn co-owner Wayne Skrehot (pronounced scray-hot) told me, “but you can’t get fried shrimp, fried chicken, chicken fried steak, stuffed crab at all those other places.” He’s got a point. Houston is particularly rich in great barbecue across the metro area, and competition is fierce. Ray’s BBQ Shack comes to mind when thinking of good fried catfish, but there might not be finer barbecue surf-and-turf in town than Barbecue Inn’s fried shrimp and pork ribs…Read More