Every ounce of your being recoils at the idea of eating barbecue in an industrial-area strip center in north Dallas. It’s just wrong! How could it have any soul! Calm down. Walk to the end of the line and start inching along (it’s like going through airport security). Pass the time identifying famous Texas pitmasters from their mug shots on the wall, and have your order well in mind when you get to the counter, because the meat cutters work at supersonic speed. Tote your tray to a varnished picnic table, amid all the cute signs and tchotchkes, and take your first bite. Prepare to feel the earth move, because, yes, it’s that good. Cattleack is the project of Todd David and his wife, Misty, who’ve given it all their love and then some. Their Akaushi ribs give new meaning to “well marbled,” while incredibly moist brisket is cradled by bark that melds into the meat. Elemental pulled pork separates into succulent strands at the touch of a fork. The pork ribs, hefty and high quality, beat the sausage, which is nice and coarse but awfully salty. Don’t pass up specials like house-made boudin or lamb-and-fig sausage.
Method: Post oak and hickory; indirect-heat pit and wood-fired rotisserie
Pitmaster: Todd David
Drinks: Beer & wine