Monday, November 30, 2009


Sometime last evening, my Blog counter rolled over 100,000 viewers. Thanks to all the loyal readers out there, aa well as the newcomers. I've got a full plate of OKC reviews that will be coming out over the next week from my Thanksgiving trip. Travels for the new year will take me to San Antonio for a new frontier of BBQ enjoyment in the Lone Star State. All S.A. suggestions are welcome.

- BBQ Snob

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Sunday, November 29, 2009


DENTON: Smokehouse
1123 Fort Worth Drive
Denton, TX 76205
Open Sun-Thur 11-9, F-Sat 11-10

Smokehouse shares a dilapidated building with the grungy looking JR Pockets pool hall a few blocks off the highway in Denton. A smokey haze hung over the dining room as I got a whiff of the now unexpected smell of cigarette smoke in a restaurant as I made my way to the register to place my to-go order. As she rang up my order for a three meat plate of brisket, ribs and German sausage, I realized just how cheap this place was. I got all that food, and two sides, for just under $9 with tax.

Back in the car, I dug in. Sides were simply seasoned ranch beans and a very finely shredded cole slaw. The sausage, from an unknown supplier, was not your typical BBQ joint sausage. It had good spice, but the texture was almost silky smooth from the extremely fine grind and high fat content. The smokiness was subdued, but overall it had good if unexpected flavor. The brisket was well cooked with great texture and good moisture content. However, no smokering was evident below the crust and the slice had little smokiness and little flavor overall. It seemed like the meat had only been seasoned with smoke, and it needed more. The ribs also had a good texture and moisture, but the heavy amount of fat in these huge spare ribs could have been more well rendered. The flavor was deeper and smokier than the brisket, but it still was lacking a bold BBQ flavor. Nothing in the meal was done poorly, but the meat just needed more flavor for a higher rating.

Rating **
Smokehouse on Urbanspoon

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Friday, November 27, 2009

BBQ Book Review - Texas Barbecue 101

Title: Texas Barbecue 101
Author: John Lopez a.k.a. Chef Wally
Published: 2008 by Great Texas Line Press

This minimalist, spiral-bound book is chock full of great Texas BBQ recipes, but nary a color photograph leaves you to imagine how good each dish must look. The author's BBQ philosophy is basically the standard low and slow method with just enough smoke, but not too much. He echoes the opinions of this blog well when he writes "I don't believe in wrapping barbecue in foil to cook it, as that steams the meat and changes the texture in an unfavorable way. I don't want to have my meat fall off the bone. I want to chew it off..."to the tooth" or al dente, best describes my ideal barbecue."

After a few pages to introduce his method, the recipes begin. Every type of meat is discussed including lamb, goat, a traditional barbacoa and even shark. Those looking for the basics like smoked ribs, brisket and pork will also find some simply explained and easy to follow directions. What you won't find here is how to substitute an oven or a gas grill for a smoker. Simply put, there is no substitute.

At the end of the book, the author lists his favorite joints as:
1. Louie Mueller, Taylor
2. Smitty's, Lockhart
3. Kreuz Market, Lockhart
4. City Market, Luling
5. Burns Bar-B-Q, Houston

- BBQ Snob

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Monday, November 23, 2009


BBQ TV is a website with its own channel on YouTube dedicated to all things barbeque. On their website you can find a few videos and on YouTube they have over 400 BBQ related videos. Most of them are dedicated to news about, or cooking tips from the folks who spend their time laboring over smokers making competition barbeque. In addition to the biopics and how-to's, you can also find such diverse information as an explanation of liquid smoke production and its (overblown) environmental benefits, a cow slaughter in Ghana and people eating (and enjoying) BBQ'd ice cream. Have fun perusing.

- BBQ Snob

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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Texas Barbecue at Texas A&M

Professor Ray Riley of the Rosenthal Meat Science and Technology Center at Texas A&M is offering students the opportunity for an all-important education in barbecue. Course #UPAS 181 has the following course description in the course directory, "Survey, demonstration, and participation class celebrating the rich heritage of Texas Barbecue; preparation techniques include types of meats, seasonings, and cooking methods with emphasis on food safety, costs, and availability; regional (e.g., Carolinas, Kansas City, Memphis, Cajun) and international (e.g., Brazilian, Argentine, Cuban, Asian) methods to be explored and compared."

In a recent class, Robb Walsh stopped by for a lecture and a brisket tasting between wrapped and not wrapped briskets. Walsh's book, Legends of Texas Barbecue serves as the textbook for the class. Although the class is on a Friday afternoon, its popularity is high in the inaugural year. Here's hoping many more Aggie classes get the chance to learn about this important piece of Texas culture.

On another note, while perusing the Rosenthal Center website, I found the most interesting online quiz I've yet to come by. On this website you can test your skill at identifying cuts of beef. You can also order some of Texas A&M's brand of beef jerky produced by the Rosenthal Center. I'll have to try some myself.

- BBQ Snob

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Friday, November 20, 2009

BBQ Pitmasters on TLC

A new show entitled BBQ Pitmasters will air eight episodes on TLC beginning on December 3rd. As reported by, "Three of the cooks featured in the series are from North Texas, including one from Fort Worth. Jamie Geer, owner of Jambo Pits, a Fort Worth company that sells custom smokers, is in the show, as are Paul Petersen, the executive chef at Rick’s Chop House in McKinney, and Johnny Trigg, considered the 'godfather of barbecue' from Alvarado." You know I'll be tuning in.

- BBQ Snob

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Smoke in the News

Smoke in Dallas has just had three major reviews come out in the past week. In addition to FGCBBQ's review earlier this week, Dave Faries from the Dallas Observer and Leslie Brenner from the Dallas Morning news turned in their opinions on consecutive days.

Mr. Faries focused more on the 'cue in his review, but gave few opinions on anything but a dry biscuit and overdone scallops. I guess the BBQ was decent in his opinion.

Leslie Brenner loved those same scallops, but hated the duck confit. Her opinion of the BBQ was a good one, but being from LA, this is probably the first real Texas 'cue she's ever reviewed. I'll agree with her positive take on the ham and the pulled pork, but the brisket has not been up to snuff on any of my visits.

- BBQ Snob

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Dusty's Bar-B-Q

3572 FM 2181

Hickory Creek, TX 75065


Open M-Sat 11-8

Smoke rises from the tiny stack above this tiny trailer in the parking lot of an office park just north of Lake Lewisville. A true drive thru is in operation with an actual bell that rings when you drive up. I'd heard about their 'cue from a reader, and their corn dogs seem to be the favorite of other reviewers. Their menu is sparse on BBQ options (no ribs or sliced beef), so I opted for the "Big Hoss" sandwich and a corn dog. The Big Hoss is a mound of chopped beef and sliced hot link on an untoasted bun with your choice of hot, medium or mild sauce.

An intense smokiness coupled with a hint of propane seasoned the chopped beef which was tepid and lacked crust or fat. Other than smoke, it had little flavor. Hot links were sliced lengthwise, and had a good spicy flavor with plenty of salt. The casings were weak and the grind was fine, but the flavor was passable.

The hot sauce (on the side) was a good mixture of sweet and spice with flecks of black pepper but not much heat given the three temperature scale. Taken as individual parts, none of the ingredients to this sandwich were outstanding, but taken together they packed a mean punch of flavor. The sauce moistened the meat and bun and added the missing flavor profiles providing a satisfying conclusion to each bite.

The corn dogs that come out of this cart rival Fletcher's, and you can get these any time of year. I'm not sure how they managed to fit a deep fryer in the trailer along with the two large fellas who work in it, but the peerless corn dogs that they fry to order are worth their effort. The breading is sweet an crispy and compliment the dog below beautifully. A few dips into the yellow mustard and this dog was gone before I knew it. I think I could even convince my wife to try this place with me.

Although I enjoyed the items from Dusty's tiny trailer, I can't really give it a rating considering they don't offer the two main items that I generally rate. Let's just say I wouldn't mind stopping by again for the 'cue and the corn dogs.

- BBQ Snob
Dusty's Bar-B-Q on Urbanspoon

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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Recent Closings in Lewisville

I went up to Lewisville yesterday to try a few places I'd heard good things about. After getting a good sandwich from Dusty's Bar-B-Q trailer off of Swisher Road, I headed south to try Hickory Hut Bar-B-Que Cafe, but found a closed sign and a make shift market stand selling fresh veggies. According to the vegetable seller, the restaurant owner had some recurring problems with a difficult landlord, so they pulled out of the joint and are now focused on their catering according to the message on their voicemail. A trip to downtown led me to another closure. It seems that the proprietors of RW's Smokehouse have also been locked out of their place since 11/12, and their disconnected phone makes me think they don't have plans to return. If anyone knows any more details, please comment.

- BBQ Snob

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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Meat Pillows

Stuffed meat pillows are available just in time for the holidays. What could be better? These protein pillows are from a company with the fine name of Sweet Meats, and come in small or family sizes.

I first found these in Meatpaper magazine, and plan to give them out to friends and family. No word on whether they are available in a scented version.

- BBQ Snob

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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Winslow's City Market Barbecue

KANSAS CITY: Winslow's City Market Barbecue
20 E 5th St
Kansas City, MO 64106
Open M-Tues 11-3, W-Thur 11-8, F-Sat 11-1am, Sun 11-8

Winslow's is situated on the edge of Kansas City's City Market. The area is a large Farmer's Market with most of its activity on Saturday. This Saturday was no different, and the area was hoppin'. We hadn't planned to eat here, and it wasn't on the itinerary, but as we walked by it to get to the market, we knew we had to stop in. One side of this place is a bar, whose patrons gave us and our stroller quite a look as we passed through to the back dining room. Once in the dining area, we ordered up some brisket, ribs, fries and slaw.

This was the closest to Texas 'cue that we had in KC. The brisket was thick cut with a deep bark and a thick smoke ring. There was a good deal of smoke around the edges, but not much had penetrated into the moist and tender slices. Overall, it was a pretty good brisket. Ribs were also good, but could have been more well rendered. The crust had plenty of smokey bite, an the meat was moist and flavorful. The sauce was thick with an odd perfumey flavor, but the meat didn't need it. Sides were passable, but forgettable. If you're visiting the City Market, you could do worse than stopping in here for a bite, or a drink.

Rating ***
Winslow's City Market Barbecue on Urbanspoon

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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Dr. Bell's BBQ

DALLAS: Dr. Bell's BBQ
1404 Main St.

Dallas, TX 75202


Open M-F 11-8, Sat 12-8

Update: This joint is CLOSED.

11/2009: On this second venture to Dr. Bell's, a few things have changed. The shiny new wall menu has been replaced by a more customizable set of chalkboards above the serving line. While the beef ribs still have a home on the online menu, they are nowhere to be found on the new chalboards, or on the serving line. One new item is a 1/2 pound plate that can be 1, 2 or 3 meats. I enjoy variety, so I opted for the pork ribs, pulled pork and sliced brisket. I'd heard good things about the sweet and spicy beans, so I coupled them with the colorful cole slaw for my side options.

A generous portion of pork ribs included one good looking specimen, one rib with the bone already showing (cut too close to the bone) and one mangled mess of rib ends that amounted to a smokey crust with a few bone chips lingering inside. The solid specimen was moist and well cooked. A layer of well rendered fat lay beneath this deeply black crust. If you read this blog, you know I love smoke flavor, but this crust was verging on a level of blackened closer to charcoal. It's been four hours now and I'm still burping up tiny plumes. Brisket was a nice improvement from my first trip. Solid thick slices were just on the verge of dry, but were tender and flavorful with a good level of smokiness. Pulled pork was one dimensional with little fat or crust. The nicely shredded meat had been mixed with a slightly sweet au jus to give it the moisture usually supplied by rendered fat.

Sides were well short of a revelation. The colorful cole slaw of red and white cabbage mixed with a medley of bell pepper and shredded carrots had so little dressing it was barely raised above rabbit food. The sweet and spicy beans had both as advertised, but they were essentially pintos with some sugar and cayenne and a few bits of brisket. The heat was there, but nothing else was brought to the party. Although they seem to have the brisket down, I think the ribs have regressed a bit. I'll also go back to the mac & cheese and potato salad next time.

Rating **

09/2009: Andrew Bell finally got this place open last Friday after some delays getting his permits in order. One permit he wasn't willing to pay for was the one requiring him to build a smoke vent all the way to the roof for several thousand dollars in order to have the wood fired Bewley smoker that he still covets. Instead, he had to settle for a smallish gas fired Ole Hickory pit which he feeds a steady dose of pecan wood. I was excited to try the rarely offered beef rib listed on the online menu, but learned that it may be offered in a few months when he gets a new cooler. He simply doesn't have the storage space for the giant ribs.

I instead opted for a combo plate with brisket and spare ribs with potato salad, green beans and mac & cheese. All of the sides were good, and worth a repeat. The ribs had a well balanced rub that offered a nice level of spice without overpowering the smoky flavor of the meat. The ribs had a nice red interior with well rendered fat. The smokiness went to the bone, but the meat had gotten a bit dry requiring some mastication to finish off. After the ribs, the brisket was a disappointment. The fatty meat was sliced very thick with good crust clinging only to one slice. These slices from the point had well rendered intramuscular fat with good moisture and great tenderness, but the flavor was closer to roast beef than smoked brisket. While it was well executed roast beef, it reminded me of Schoepf's in Belton which was also missing the smoke that I crave.

My wife only came along because they had a frito pie on the menu. This version is done with a spicy chili, and is served deconstructed. She enjoyed it, but just wanted more.

While I think the Doctor is on the right track, he's still got some kinks to work out. I'm excited to return and try the meat during the lunch rush when the joint isn't getting down to the end of their stock. While they show real potential, until they can elevate the brisket from roast beef into smoky BBQ, I can't recommend going too far out of your way. I think the folks downtown will be happy to have this option added to the lunch mix.

Dr. Bell's BBQ on Urbanspoon

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Friday, November 6, 2009

Arthur Bryant's Barbeque

KANSAS CITY: Arthur Bryant's Barbeque
1727 Brooklyn Ave

Kansas City, MO 64127


Open M-Thur 10-9:30, F-Sat 10-10, Sun 11-8

Keith Jackson would call a meal at Arthur Bryant’s just like he would the Rose Bowl, the “Granddaddy of them All.” If I had to extend that metaphor a little further, I would liken their product to the Rose Bowls of the late eighties and early nineties. It doesn’t live up to the history or the hype. Oh, there may be a Mark Brunell in there but it’s mostly Ki-Jana Carter and Billy Joe Hobert. Arthur Bryant’s opened for business in 1908. They moved to their current location more recently (1958).

Saturday morning began with a trip to Arthur Bryant's to try and beat the rush. This place gets busy, and the line doesn't exactly move along briskly. Luckily our arrival at 10:10 allowed us to get through with no line to order a few huge sandwiches, including the open faced burnt end sandwich. By the time we left, a literal bus-load of hungry diners were in line.

Brisket had been sliced very thin and with the grain. It was still a bit chewy and cold, but not very flavorful. Sliced pork was much better with a great deal of well rendered fat and good smokiness. Sausage came in thin slices from a bologna sized log. It was odd, but had good seasoning. The ribs had a good crust and texture as well as great flavor, but the burnt ends were the best. Being the beginning of the day we got true bits of burnt brisket ends, and the flavor of the meat and the original sauce together was perfect. The other two sauces, one sweet and one spicy, had odd flavors that would take some getting used to.

With epic clashes like the 2006 Texas-USC game and future NFL players on virtually every roster, the Rose Bowl has again taken its rightful place in college football. Arthur Bryant’s is still well worth a visit, but it lacks the transcendent flavor that makes barbecue legendary. We can only hope they will recapture some of that magic and bring their food back the highest level.

Rating ***
Arthur Bryant's Barbeque on Urbanspoon

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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Vaccum Packed Brisket Battle

An inquiring mind sent an e-mail to the blog asking if I'd heard of Sadler's Smokehouse, and their vacuum packed BBQ dinners. All of the meat is smoked in Henderson, Texas, and this fellow wanted to know if this stuff still tasted like decent smoked meat. It being a new product, I had to check around at some local stores until I finally found it at Wal-Mart. It seems like the idea of microwaveable brisket and Wal-Mart are a perfect match, so I'm not sure why I didn't think of it first.

When I arrived at the Uptown Dallas Wal-Mart for the first time, I noticed an entire case just inside the entry dedicated to microwavable meat products. Among them were more vacuum packed BBQ items than I ever imagined possible. I would finally be able to give a firm opinion on this Sadler's stuff beyond my initial disgust at the thought. At this point, I figured why not go all in to determine how it also stacked up against one of its plastic coated brethren. Lloyd's seemed like a good match being made in Austin...oh wait that's Austin, Minnesota. Oddly enough both were labeled best before 02/04/2010. Did I mention they were refrigerated rather than frozen?

Opening the Sadler's package revealed a heap of mashed potatoes and some thick slices of brisket, all with a hefty smoke ring. The directions were to microwave it for 3 minutes on high, so I peered through the glass to watch the plastic bubble inflate above the meat.

It actually looks halfway appetizing.

Lean slices with no pooling or puddling of grease.

Succumbing to the mighty power of low expectations, my tongue and my mind convinced me that this stuff wasn't half bad. I certainly have had worse at some Dallas BBQ joints, but I wouldn't call this stuff exemplary. The crust was dark but had long ago turned mushy from its long marinade in the sauce. The sauces for both Sadler's and Lloyd's had water and sugar as the first two ingredients with tomatoes garnering only a bronze. Not a good start if your looking for sauce rather than syrup. Despite that, the meat had a good beefy texture, and the sauce wasn't all that bad of a compliment with hints of black pepper and garlic. Sadler's meat, upon closer inspection not clouded by plastic glare, had an odd two tone smoke ring that was obviously chemically enhanced to gain its nearly half inch thickness.

Bring on the competition. This one got mean starting off in the microwave with nearly four straight minutes of hissing. The runny sauce was boiling by the time it had completed cooking per the package directions, so I opened it gingerly.

Not that either look good, but that's just misleading labeling.

Don't worry, the grease comes absolutely free.

Peeling back the plastic, I was expecting the worst brisket of my life, and I got it. The slices had a mealy texture and the flavor had an odd tinny aftertaste, made especially odd because it's stored in plastic. Paired with the overly sweet sauce, this concoction tasted more like a sloppy joe than sliced brisket. Unlike the Sadler's these slices were covered in liquid fat as well as sauce, and I couldn't get through more than a few bites. Without a doubt, Sadler's is the clear winner in this unfortunate category of smoked meat.

- BBQ Snob

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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbecue

KANSAS CITY: Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbecue
101 W 22nd St
Kansas City, MO 64108
Open M-Thur 11-10, F-Sat 11-10:30, Sun 11-8

"The wait is sixty to ninety minutes", said the hostess. This joint was hopping from the American Royal crowd, not to mention the NASCAR and "Farmageddon" (Iowa State vs. Kansas State) crowds, but we were there for the long haul. A few Boulevard beers on draught from the crowded bar helped to ease things along, and we were into a white clothed table in a mere forty minutes. Lighting was at about candlelight level, so reading the menu was a chore and the photos from dinner are terrible, but the food was good. The menu is full of smoked options along with steaks and seafood, and you won't find your average 'cue sides here either. Choices range from smoked baked beans with brisket drippings to the famous cheesy corn bake. I had searched this menu online several times before the big day, so I was already set.

Crown Prime Beef Ribs are not your usual beef rib. They are thick cut leaving plenty of the prime rib portion on the rib. They are then smoked and cut into four inch thick behemoths. A single rib was enjoyed as an appetizer by our table. Ravenously hungry, we tore into the rib before proper photo documentation, but only about 1/4 of the rib made it on my plate which made for several mouthfuls of tender beefyness. Smoke was not able to penetrate the entire cross section, but bites that included the thick crust had plenty of smokiness.

Another appetizer offered was an array of burnt ends, and we opted for the pork burnt ends. These were essentially chunks of pork that had been charred over an open flame. The result tasted more like charcoal than BBQ.

Among their many rib possibilities, Jack Stack is probably most famous for their lamb ribs. With all of the fat in these ribs, it was good thing it was well rendered. Given the strong gamey flavor, it was hard to distinguish any smoke. I usually enjoy lamb, but I wouldn't order these again. The pork ribs were better if unmemorable. They came with a slathering of sweet sauce and also had little smokiness. The meat was plenty tender, but it was almost too mushy.

A plate of sliced sausage was above average for KC 'cue. The meat had a medium grind with a seasoning similar to italian sausage although it is consistently referred to as their special recipe Strawberry Hill polish sausage. My guess is that it's made by Krizman's. The casing had a good snap, and the overall flavor was excellent.

Brisket (not pictured) was thin sliced with moderate smokey flavor. The lean meat tasted mainly of roast beef. The sides were all they are billed to be. The hickory pit beans had a deeper smokiness than the meats and the sweetness was almost caramelized into the beans. Onion rings are enormous, crispy, and satisfying, and the cheesy corn bake is a new favorite.

Jack Stack is not your average BBQ joint. Their huge selection of items, and their white tablecloths seem to be suited to please the masses, but the quality of the meat is above average, and their attention to the non-BBQ items does not take away from their smoked items. I will surely return when I'm in KC again.

Rating ***
Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbecue (Crossroads) on Urbanspoon

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Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Yes, Meatpaper. That's the name of this unapologetically carnivorous magazine. It is the brain child of Sasha Wizansky and Amy Standen, and even includes a vegetarian on their writing staff.

A description from their website reads "At once divisive and universal, delicious and disturbing, funny and dead-serious, meat polarizes us unlike any other food. Us, we’re ambidextrous here at Meatpaper — no agenda except to gnaw on the ideas, artistic excursions and bone-deep emotions the subject inspires. We invite you to dig in with us."

I've dug in to my first two issues after recently subscribing. The first image inside every cover is a meat centerfold showing two full color pages of borderless meat. While I haven't found anything strictly BBQ related, the articles about meat consumption and animal slaughter, and the poetic odes to boudin and bacon are both thought provoking, humorous, intelligently written, and downright enjoyable.

- BBQ Snob

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Monday, November 2, 2009

Pork Ribs at Kuby's

After a dual rib lunch at Peggy Sue BBQ in Dallas' Snider Plaza, I headed to Kuby's across the street to see if I could find some of their smoked pork ribs. I'd heard that these baby backs were second to none, and with an exceptional sausage making reputation preceding them, I had high hopes for what these Germans could do to some ribs.

Half slab of baby backs

At the back meat counter, there is a warming tray holding a bevy of smoked pork chops, sausages and baby back ribs. I ordered up a half rack, and peeked through the back room door to catch a glimpse of the smoker. The guys at the meat counter could only tell me that it was a German model, but from the looks of it, it's an upright electric smoker that doubles as an oven and a steamer.

Rib cross section

They must not use much wood in that smoker, because there was merely a wisp of fleeting smokiness. These ribs were well seasoned with salt and black pepper, and they were perfectly cooked as evidenced by the tender meat and well rendered fat. The flavor was great, but these were not among the best smoked ribs that I've sampled.

- BBQ Snob

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Sunday, November 1, 2009

Peggy Sue BBQ

6600 Snider Plaza
Dallas, TX 75205
Open Sun-Thur 11-9, F-Sat 11-10

Update 2009: I felt like ribs, so the rib platter at Peggy Sue was just the ticket. A healthy portion of both spare ribs and baby backs come piled high together with your choice of two great sides. I always have a hard time deciding between all of the excellent side dishes, but on this day I opted for the chunky potato salad and the unique hoppin' john. The potato salad is rich with mayo and big chunk of well seasoned red skin potatoes. Hoppin' john is a soothing concoction of black-eyed peas, peppers, onions, rice, and bacon. It was nearly hearty enough for a meal all alone.

Three large spare ribs come alongside five baby backs. The spare ribs had a decent smokiness and very well rendered fat, but that's to be expected if they're as overcooked as these were. The texture was of braised rather than smoked meat. Some readers might call this sacrilegious for the BBQ Snob, but I prefer the presauced baby backs on this plate to the spare ribs. These ribs are covered in a generous layer of Peggy Sue's own homemade spicy sauce. This sauce has some real heft along with plenty of black pepper and none of the candy sweetness often found in inferior sauces. The ribs are also well smoked, with the smokiness shining through to marry well with the sauce. Unlike the spare ribs, these baby backs were not overcooked and had a pleasant level of tenderness. Next time I'll just stick with the baby backs and the hoppin' john, and I'll be a satisfied diner.

Rating **

2008: I normally do not review BBQ restaurants with waiters, cloth napkins, and such a wide menu, but I've been going to Peggy Sue BBQ since I've lived in Dallas, and I thought I should include it anyways. The sides here are what shine. Steamed spinach, skin-on mashed potatoes, squash casserole...they're all good. The meat, however, lacks the depth of flavor that the sides provide. The brisket here is sliced thin with no fat. A good black crust and well defined smoke line create only a fleeting smoke flavor that does not travel to the center of each slice. The lack of fat also creates a dry slice, that needs sauce to make it enjoyable. Not to worry, the sauce here is excellent. This thick smoky concoction is served warm, and it has just the kick that the brisket needs. Both spare ribs and baby backs are served here. The spare ribs equal the appearance and dryness of the brisket, but the flavor is more pronounced. The baby backs arrived sauced. Their lack of adhesion to the bone made me think parboiled, and the lack of smoke flavor confirmed it. These are tasty, tender, flavorful ribs, but they're not real BBQ.

Peggy Sue's BBQ on Urbanspoon

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Each joint is judged on the essence of Texas 'cue...sliced brisket and pork ribs. Sausage is only considered if house made. Sauce is good, but good meat needs no adornment to satisfy. Each review can only be based on specific cuts of meat on that particular day. Finally, if the place fries up catfish or serves a caesar salad, then chances are they aren't paying enough attention to the pits, so we mostly steered clear.