Interview: Karl Kuby Sr. of Kuby’s Sausage House

Apr 19, 2016 By Daniel Vaughn

Karl Kuby Jr. (left) and Karl Kuby Sr. (right) outside of Kuby’s Owner: Kuby’s Sausage House; Opened 1961 Age: 84 If you’ve had breakfast at Kuby’s Sausage House in Dallas’s Snider Plaza, chances are you’ve seen Karl Kuby Sr. canvassing the dining room looking for kids so he can…

Vincek’s Smokehouse

Mar 4, 2016 By Daniel Vaughn

Gary Vincek seems to do it all. He doesn’t run a just a barbecue joint, a sausage factory, a meat market, a processing facility, or a bakery. As owner and pitmaster at Vincek’s Smokehouse, he and his crew provide the Southeast Texas town of East Bernard with all of those things.

Interview: Tim Mikeska of Mikeska Brands

Mar 2, 2016 By Daniel Vaughn

Owner: Mikeska Brands Texas Bar-B-Q; Founded 2008 Age: 56 Smoker: Brick Smokehouse Wood: Oak wood with oak and hickory sawdust Tim Mikeska has had enough with running restaurants. He’s traded it in for the wholesale sausage business, and now his family’s Czech sausage recipe can be enjoyed in Texas, New York,…

Smoked in Texas: Sausage at Galvan’s Sausage House

Mar 1, 2016 By Daniel Vaughn

After more than thirty years of doing laundry for the local school district, Clemente Galvan Jr. chose a second career: barbecue. It hasn’t been easy. The pit room at Galvan’s Sausage House has burned down twice, most recently in 2014. He works long hours at the small restaurant along Highway 90 in…

A Glossary of Casings

Feb 29, 2016 By Daniel Vaughn

Smoked sausage is a pillar of Texas barbecue. We talk a lot about the staggering sausage varieties—pork, beef, fine-grind, coarse-grind, hot guts, jalapeno-cheese, macaroni and cheese—but what’s discussed less frequently is what we stuff those fillings into: the casings. Last week I went on a barbecue tour with Greg Mueller…

Sausage Making, Freedmen’s Style

Jan 5, 2016 By Daniel Vaughn

When a process is notoriously complicated and unpleasant, people tend to trot out a time-worn idiom: you don’t want to know how the sausage gets made. While the saying is especially useful when it comes to any political bureaucratic dealing, it’s a bit derogatory and it slightly diminishes the art of the craft,…

The Modern Marvel of Kuby’s Sausage House

Oct 6, 2015 By Daniel Vaughn

When we marvel at the endurance of family-run barbecue joints in Texas, it becomes noteworthy when one hangs on for four—hell, even three—generations. So if someone deciding to make a living in the same way as their great-grandfather is pretty rare, but in the middle of Dallas, there is a business that’s…

On Sausage Wraps

Jun 1, 2015 By Daniel Vaughn

The sausage wrap is underrated. It’s too simple to get much attention, but it deserves more than bottom-of-the-menu status. At its most basic, a sausage wrap is a link of sausage wrapped in a single slice of white bread. You can call it a wrap, a roll-up, fold-over, or sandwich.

All the Sausages

May 18, 2015 By Daniel Vaughn

Making sausage ain’t easy. There’s the trimming, grinding, seasoning, stuffing, and then the smoking. For barbecue joints, buying a few boxes of cheap sausage from your food distributor is a tempting prospect when compared to the hours required to make your own. But Texas is a place where smoked sausages are a…

A Sausage Evolution

May 6, 2015 By Daniel Vaughn

Sausage. It’s one of the signatures of our state’s barbecue style, but the time intensive process of grinding, stuffing, and smoking sausage fell out of favor when barbecue left the meat market. With the rise of commercial sausage makers, many barbecue joints were (and are) happy to purchase their sausage…

The Longest Sausage in Texas

Nov 17, 2014 By Daniel Vaughn

The Guinness World Record for the world’s longest sausage, from the UK, checks in at just over thirty-six miles. The longest smoked sausage, from Germany, was 1,581 feet, 5 inches, but the longest smoked sausage in Texas (probably) was on display yesterday at Meat…

Smoking Sausages

Oct 20, 2014 By Daniel Vaughn

The Rabrokers have been selling their family recipe German sausage out of Westphalia Market since 1963. The tiny town of Westphalia sits between Zabcikville and Lott on Highway 320 (about twenty minutes east of Temple), and the market is a great reason to take a detour. They make several…

What Is Texas-German Sausage?

Oct 14, 2014 By Daniel Vaughn

Last week I spent some time in West Texas eating barbecue. I’ve done a few tours through the area already, so I know not to get excited when I see “German sausage” on a menu, but I had a temporary memory lapse. The prospect of finding a coarsely ground and smoky beef…

A Tour of Houston Sausages

Jul 14, 2014 By Daniel Vaughn

As one third of the Texas barbecue trinity, smoked sausage has important stature in Texas. Central Texas has its beef sausages, East Texas has got hot links, and you’ll find plenty of smoked boudin along the Louisiana border. In Houston, they have it all as J.C. Reid and Michael Fulmer…

Smoked in Texas: Nolan Ryan Brisket Sausage

Oct 14, 2013 By Daniel Vaughn

The sausage section at our local Kroger is well-stocked with dozens of sausages. Several weeks back my wife brought home a gift of the latest option: Nolan Ryan Beef Brisket Sausage. It was introduced to Kroger shelves back in July, and as Nolan Ryan Beef CEO Charlie Bradbury…

Ode to Sausage

Jan 21, 2013 By Texas Monthly

President George W. Bush will leave Washington, D.C., the city where I, a boy from Houston, now reside, every bit as divided as it was when he first hit town. This is too bad, but a far bigger disappointment is that he has not spent a farthing of his political…

Ode to . . .

Jan 20, 2013 By Texas Monthly

Ode To Brisket When you’re a food writer, people are always asking about the best meal you’ve ever eaten. I know they’re expecting tales of an unforgettable lunch at Michel Bras or a poetic kaiseki meal in Kyoto or a beluga extravaganza on the banks of the Volga, but what…

TMBBQFest Photo Gallery

Oct 31, 2011 By Jason Cohen

Mouse over for captions, or click for full-size image. See ya next year (or tomorrow at your favorite joint)! Renee Carrathus and her brother run the joint their father built.

TMBBQFest, “23 Pitmasters in 23 Days:” Louie Mueller BBQ

Oct 14, 2011 By Elizabeth Castro

Editor’s Note: The Texas Monthly BBQ Festival is almost here! Each day until then, we’ll be talking to one of the featured pitmasters, with questions from TM staffers, esteemed BBQ experts, Twitter followers and you, the readers of this blog. Today we bring you Wayne Mueller, 46, of Louie Mueller BBQ in Taylor. For more info, visit their page on What is your heat source and what type of wood do you use? We use oak wood for all of our heat sources. It’s an abundant hard wood source here in our region. It provides a smoke that isn’t overpowering—it’s subtle but distinct. It works well for us and it’s readily available. There is plenty of it, so we don’t have to constantly change what type of wood we use, which would ultimately change how our product tastes. Who did you learn your craft from? Well, I started working in the family restaurant when my father took over from his father in 1972, when I was 8 years old. I worked in the restaurant until I left town to go to college, so about 10 or 11 years. I came back in 2007, when my father was ready to retire and we wanted to insure the restaurant stayed in the family. So I divested myself from an agency in Houston and moved back to Taylor. What’s your signature meat? Brisket is our number one entrée. I don’t want to say we have a cult following because that has a negative connotation, but we also have strong following of our beef ribs and sausages. Sauce or no sauce? No, we use a dry rub. We do offer a sauce, but it’s more of a complimentary hydration fluid. It doesn’t cover the meat. It’s not a thick, viscous sauce you would find in the south or anywhere else – like a ketchup kind of covering. Instead, it’s primarily made of the rubs. So it acts like a compliment to the meat instead of covering it up in sauce.

TMBBQFest, “23 Pitmasters in 23 Days”: Big Daddy’s Roadhouse BBQ

Oct 12, 2011 By Stephanie Kuo

Editor’s Note: The Texas Monthly BBQ Festival is almost here! Each day until then, we’ll be talking to one of the featured pitmasters, with questions from TM staffers, esteemed BBQ experts, Twitter followers and you, the readers of this blog. Today we bring you Joe Arriago, 33 of Big Daddy’s Roadhouse BBQ in Lavon. For more info, visit their page on Photograph by Daniel Vaughn. Who did you learn your craft from? We went to a school for this, and my boss paid for it. And everyday I try to learn more. We try to do the most we can here. I’ve been working here for all 16 years, and I love it. I love my job. There’s always something new every time to learn. What’s your signature meat? We got brisket, sausage, turkey, ham, ribs, chicken and pulled pork. We have all those seven different kinds of meats. My favorites are the brisket and the ribs. I think those are the best here at Big Daddy’s. Sauce or no sauce? I like the meat with no sauce. Sometimes, with the meat we cook, you don’t need the sauce. They already come in with real good flavor. But we do have a barbecue sauce here for customers. It’s Big Daddy’s own recipe. It tastes real good. It’s sweet sauce.

TMBBQFest, “23 Pitmasters in 23 Days”: Cousin’s Bar-B-Q

Oct 11, 2011 By Jessica Huff

Editor’s Note: The Texas Monthly BBQ Festival is almost here! Each day until then, we’ll be talking to one of the featured pitmasters, with questions from TM staffers, esteemed BBQ experts, Twitter followers and you, the readers of this blog. Today we bring you Cliff Payne, 58, of Cousin's Bar-B-Q, which has six locations around the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, including two nestled inside DFW Airport. Cousin's sausage and beef ribs both won People's Choice at last year's festival. For more info, visit their page on What kind of wood do you use? Green hickoryWho did you learn your craft from? My dad started in the restaurant business in 1967 when we opened a seafood restaurant in San Antonio. My dad would work about one hundred hours a week so we’d go to the restaurant to visit him, and if we went to the restaurant we had to work. I started when I was twelve. I went from scrubbing floors and peeling potatoes to helping cook. We did that for about fifteen years, then we decided in 1982 to get into the barbecue business. Dad learned it from Walter Jetton, he was the big barbecue man, and my dad worked part time for him. In ‘83 we opened in Fort Worth and have been doing it ever since.What’s the best thing you smoke? Well, brisket is our biggest seller and everyone loves our ribs, but each one of our products has something special about it. We’ve got the best chicken in Fort Worth and we make our own sausage that won in Austin last year. So probably brisket, ribs, chicken and then sausage.Sauce or no sauce? We put sauce on the side. All the barbecue I eat there’s no sauce on it though.Do you make your own sausage? Yes, in two styles, smoked German sausage and jalapeno pepper sausage. About twenty years ago we brought over a young man from Germany—a sausage master, and he got us in the right direction with the German sausage with some trial and error. Our other kind is a hot link, with jalapeno and cheddar in it, which won at the festival last year. People were really talking about that. We make everything in small batches because it is all hands-on. We don’t have the big equipment to mass produce it.

Photo Preview: John Mueller’s JMueller BBQ Is (Finally!) Almost (Really!) Here

Oct 6, 2011 By Jason Cohen

It's been a long time in the making (a VERY long time in the making): John Mueller, sometimes called the black sheep of the Taylor smoked meat family, is almost back in business here in Austin. Mueller, who used to have a legendary place on Manor Rd. (and famously sold his smoker to Aaron Franklin), has a new trailer at 1501 South 1st St., and the fire has been lit. Visit his web site or follow @jmuellerbbq on Twitter for upcoming details (and while you're at it, follow us). The Smoker "Burning Out" Ribs to Prepare Smoker

How to Make Venison Sausage

Apr 30, 2011 By Andrea Valdez

Watching lawmakers bicker over the state budget in Austin reminds us of the old adage about what politics and sausage have in common. Fortunately for sausage, its approval ratings are through the roof. “It’s become easier to stuff sausage at home, since more places are selling small grinders and stuffers,”…

City Meat Market

May 16, 2009 By Daniel Vaughn

Thousands of drivers a day pass through Giddings along Texas Highway 290 on their way between Austin and Houston. They would all do themselves a favor if they stopped right in the center of town to sample the fine meats smoked at City Meat Market. This is a true meat…

Earl Campbell

Aug 31, 2001 By Jan Reid

He has moved from pig skin to pork sausage, but he's still trying to score.