DALLAS: Odom’s BBQ
1971 Singleton Blvd
Dallas, TX 75334
Open M-Thur 10:30-1:45am, F-Sat 10:30-2:45am, Sun 10:30-11:45pm
Update: I drive by Odom's every Monday evening, but I always seem to have already made some other plans for dinner. Yesterday was different, and I dropped in on a tip from a friend that Odom's offers an off-menu burnt end type sandwich covered in spicy sauce. Only a blank stare greeted my inquiry, so the sandwich wasn't to be. Instead, I was told to just order a rib tip sandwich. A few minutes later I was headed home with a brown bag of smokiness and a brick of chocolate cake.
To get to the meat takes several levels of unwrapping. First you unroll the top of the paper bag, then unclench the foil wrapper, and finally peel away the now soggy white bread. Underneath were eight fat and juicy ribs, but certainly not the promised rib tips. I'm plenty familiar with the quality of these ribs, but this time they were my sole focus. There is no heavy rub. Just enough salt, smoke and time work together to create perfectly moist, tender meat that doesn't fall from the bone. A dip in the thin vinegar heavy sauce flecked with cracked black pepper complimented the sweet meat rather than overwhelming. Six ribs in, I realized I was eating some of the best ribs in Dallas, and I made a personal vow to make more Monday evening stops at Odom's.
2010: I walked into Odom's just as Michael Vick was scoring his third touchdown of the first quarter in a recent Monday Night Football game. As I waited for my order, the two televisions on either end of the room had their volume cranked, but their timing was a bit off making for an odd echo in the empty dining room. This being more an East Texas style joint, I decided to try the East Texas specialties of hot links and chopped beef, but I couldn't leave the place without a few ribs. You don't get a choice on sides. Everyone gets a whipped potato salad heavy on the mustard and pickles and some smokey pinto beans.
Ribs were perfectly tender with nicely rendered fat. The meat had great flavor and good touch of smoke. The meat still clings to the bone, but yields easily with a little tooth pressure. Hot links are heavy on the black pepper and pretty light on the heat. They have just the right amount of fat with a chewy casing. The meat is rich and smokey but could have used more heat.
A chopped beef sandwich is generally made with the point end of the brisket that is much fattier than the flat that is usually reserved for the sliced portions. Odom's definitely uses the point meat, and maybe some extra rendered fat added. The bottom bun was soaked with sauce and liquid fat. No butter needed on this bun. The meat had good smokiness and plenty of crust mixed in with the meat. I much preferred it to the sliced beef I had on my previous visit, and saw no need to order the large sandwich. The small has plenty of meat is dirt cheap, fat and all.
2008: A harvest moon lit an otherwise dim parking lot. The scent of wood smoke hung heavy in the air as I passed through the door beside the prominent "NO GUNS" sign. A rag-tag clientele waited on mostly to-go orders as a clueless couple stood at the counter asking directions to Frisco. I patiently watched the Cowboys on the fuzzy TV in the corner until the equally fuzzy directions were doled out by the man behind the counter with a large gold grill. The cashier finally asked to take my order, and I requested a two-meat plate with brisket and ribs, and I was informed that the proper term was a "Mixed Plate". After a brief encounter with a harmless pan-handler in the parking lot, I was on my way home to feast.
The mixed plate consists of three slices of white bread, BBQ beans, potato salad, five slices of brisket, two large spare ribs cut in half, and thankfully, sauce on the side. All this for $8.20! The brisket was mostly gray with the slightest of smoke lines. Any crust had tragically been discarded. While there was little smoke, the overall flavor was fine if a little roast-beefy. The slices were perfectly tender with well rendered fat. Although the brisket fell shy of stellar, the ribs more than made up for it. These ribs had a slightly sweet rub that formed a beautiful deep red crust with excellent smoke flavor. The smoke flavor permeated this tender rib meat creating great flavor throughout. The only knock on these ribs was a thin layer of unrendered fat lying just below the incredible crust. Although I'd suggest coming here just before the sun dips below the horizon, I would brave the dark of night for another order of those ribs.