Barbecue

Texas barbecue, the classic version of which is found primarily in Central Texas and distinguished by its use of beef brisket and its indirect smoking method, is superior to all other regional varieties of barbecue. This is an incontrovertible fact. However, the state boasts tremendous variety of barbecue styles, from the cabrito pits of South Texas to the sweet tangy ribs of East Texas. Over the years, Texas Monthly has written about them all. In our first barbecue story, “The World’s Best Barbecue is in Taylor, Texas. Or is it Lockhart?” Griffin Smith Jr. wrote that, “at first blush, the East Texas chopped pork sandwich with hot sauce has little in common with the slab of Central Texas beef. . . . The emphasis in Central Texas is overwhelmingly on the meat itself—sauce, if available at all, is usually just a side dip.”

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Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

PITS: The Encyclopedia Entry

The traditional way to prepare Texas barbecue is in a pit, the more smoke-infused and grease-encrusted the better. The word “pit” harks back to the days when meats were cooked over smoldering coals in an earthen pit or trench, especially for large gatherings. Nowadays, such buried ovens are extremely rare,

Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

Lockhart: Kreuz Market

The old Kreuz Market was like a one-room chapel. The humble brick building off the courthouse square in Lockhart had turned out divine smoked meat since 1900. But just as churchgoers nowadays worship in larger halls, so too does the visitor to the new Kreuz Market, which opened in 1999

Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

Lockhart: Smitty’s Market

Don’t bother going in the front door. You’ll end up in the parking lot behind the boxy brick building anyway, doing the Smitty’s shuffle: At peak hours, the lines invariably stretch out the back door. Patiently, you inch your way forward, passing the waist-high brick pits and perusing the list

Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

Luling: City Market

You’ve come for wholeness, for satisfaction deep within your soul. Your searching has brought you here, to the company of fellow pilgrims in the snaking line. Slowly, you advance across the tile floor, past the knotty-pine walls, and up to the inner sanctum: a glass-enclosed chamber where a host of

Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

Taylor: Louie Mueller Barbecue

Forty-nine years of post oak coals in the pit have smoke-cured the building, which previously housed a ladies’ basketball court and a grocery market. Louie moved in with his barbecue business in 1959; his son, Bobby, took over more than three decades ago, but not a thing has suffered from

Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

State Fare

Some like it hot; Texans like it hotter. That’s why Carl Walker, the chef at Brennan’s in Houston (3300 Smith), branded his barbecued shrimp with black pepper and poblano chiles. Double-daring the Southwest palate, he paired the shrimp with his spicy version of a down-home favorite. “I wanted to make

Food & Drink |
January 20, 2013

Texas Creole Barbecued Shrimp

Barbecue Sauce Base 2 1/2 lemons, peeled and quartered 3 tablespoons coarse-ground black pepper 2 tablespoons seafood seasoning 1 cup Worcestershire sauce 1 cup water 6 cloves garlicIn saucepan combine all ingredients and reduce liquid by half. Strain liquid through fine-mesh strainer and reserve.Shrimp 1/3 cup julienne red bell pepper

Eat My Words |
August 6, 2012

Scott Roberts details The Salt Lick Cookbook

You can’t talk about great Texas barbecue without mentioning Driftwood’s most famous barbecue joint of all time – The Salt Lick Bar-B-Que. Through the years this Central Texas haunt has gained both fame and popularity for its delicious barbecue meats – well known for their

Eat My Words |
March 26, 2012

Foodways Texas Is Getting Fat and Sassy

Foodways Texas, which was founded in July 2010 “to preserve, promote, and celebrate the diverse food cultures of Texas," held its second annual symposium in Austin this past weekend. A couple of hundred participants listened to talks on the theme of “Texas Preserved”—a deliberately wide-ranging topic that covered

Food & Drink |
February 1, 2012

Smoke Gets in Your Eyes

For all the stories that we publish in TEXAS MONTHLY, there are always more that we don’t publish, usually because we run out of space and time. In a state that spans 261,232 square miles and contains 25,145,561 people, it’s a safe bet that the things we could cover

Eat My Words |
October 27, 2011

Second fiddle barbecue

The luminaries of Texas barbecue are justly revered—from Lockhart's century old Kreuz Market, to Taylor's estimable Louie Mueller Barbecue to the ever-popular Cooper's Old Time Pit BBQ in Llano. For the BBQ dabbler these names are familiar, but their pitmasters may as well be Hollywood celebrities

Eat My Words |
October 27, 2011

TMBBQFest, “23 Pitmasters in 23 Days:” Wild Blue BBQ

Editor’s Note: Just three more days until the Texas Monthly BBQ Festival! As you surely know by now, we’ve been interviewing all the featured pitmasters, with questions from TM staffers, esteemed BBQ experts, Twitter followers and you, the readers of this blog. Today we’re featuring Abraham Avila, 42, of Wild Blue BBQ in

Eat My Words |
September 7, 2011

BBQ Snob: Dallas Enjoys a BBQ Renaissance

Editor's Note: Daniel Vaughn, writing under the name BBQ Snob, runs the Full Custom Gospel BBQ blog and will also be writing about barbecue for Texas Monthly. This is his first column. Texas barbecue is having a moment. It seems like every time I turned around this

Eat My Words |
September 16, 2010

Trailer Thursday: Old School BBQ and Grill

Good Samaritan that you are, if you saw a school bus on the side of the road with smoke billowing from its roof, you’d probably call 911. Now, it might seem counterintuitive, but don’t dial those digits. Pull over, whip out your wallet, and prepare for some of the best

Food & Drink |
August 31, 2010

Smokin’

Can your backyard brisket taste as good as the meat you’d get at your favorite barbecue joint? Bill Karau, a native of Pittsburg, thinks so. There’s only one catch—you’ve got to use one of his pits.

Eat My Words |
April 8, 2010

Once a Barbecue Fanatic, Always a Barbecue Fanatic

Many years ago, before he moved away from Austin to the Frozen North (the D.C. area), journalist Jim Shahin was one of the people I turned to in times of freelance need. He contributed to food stories for Texas Monthly, but mainly, he distinguished himself by possessing a barbecue fanaticism

Food & Drink |
May 31, 2000

The Meating

Three friends, seven years, untold pounds of barbecue pork chops and prime rib, and a single tradition that elevates the experience above mere food.

Food & Drink |
April 1, 2000

Hot Sauce

How the Stubb's barbecue empire outlasted the death of its namesake—and proved that spice guys sometimes finish first.

Food & Drink |
January 1, 1996

Virtual Vittles

From chili to chiles, there’s a heaping helping of Texas food on the Internet, including cookoff schedules, mail-order info, recipes, and restaurant reviews. Dig in.

Business |
July 31, 1992

A Goode Idea

How the owner of Goode Company in Houston took the three basic Texas food groups—barbecue, Tex-Mex, and burgers—and built an empire.