Make no bones about it – Texas barbecue is an obsession. It’s the subject of countless newspaper and magazine articles, from national press to regional favorite Texas Monthly. Some of central Texas’ smaller towns – Lockhart and Elgin, to name only two – maintain perennial reputations for their smokehouse cultures, and routinely draw dedicated pilgrims from miles around.
No self-respecting Texan would agree with another about who has the best barbecue, since that would take the fun out of it. However you like it – sliced thick onto butcher paper, slapped on picnic plates, doused with a tangy sauce or eaten naturally flavorful right out of the smokehouse barbecue pit – be sure to savor it…and then argue to the death that your way is the best way. Like a true Texan – Lonely Planet.
I was reading the lonely planet guide on the plane – about Texan BBQ. Food and drink were under one section, then Texas barbecue was under it’s own stand-alone section. I thought that was a pretty good indication of how seriously people take barbecue here (and how freakin’ delicious it might be).
Apparently, there are all sorts of BBQ etiquette, which you pick up over time. And you pick a favourite barbecue place by how they cook the meat, what side dishes are offered, the rub (wet rubs is like a marinade/sauce or dry marinade is like salt and pepper etc) and the sauce. Don was kind enough to throw Dave and I into the barbecue fray on one of our first nights here, so we could participate in all discussions barbecue.
We went to Rudy’s Bar-B-Q and got chicken, brisket, ribs, potato salad and beans. And onions, pickles and smokey sauce.
IT WAS DELICIOUS.
I LOVED brisket on a bread roll with pickles, onion and sauce. Apparently it’s the same cut of meat as corned beef (that my Nan happens to make back home, so we eat it all the time), just slow cooked over a barbecue pit for like 12 hours (with a rub on it of course).