When we compiled our last list, in 2003, the Cooper’s in Mason was in our top five. (The more famous Cooper’s, in Llano, is operated independently.) Sadly, it has now fallen out of our top fifty. Each piece of barbecue we sampled—from the brisket to the pork ribs to the cabrito—was very dry, and this was before the lunch rush. Slightly redeeming the overcooked meats was a deep, complex mesquite flavor.
Cooper’s Original Pit Bar-B-Q (Mason)
This is the original. Started by George Cooper in 1953, but sold to Duard Dockal (who still runs it) in 1983. This is where the family traditions of cooking directly over mesquite coals and ordering straight from the pit were born. It was one of my favorites of mine and