Monday, March 15, 2010
SAN ANTONIO: Two Bros. BBQ Market
12656 West Avenue, Suite B
San Antonio, TX 78216
Open M-Sat 10:30-8:30, Sun 11-7
02/2010: My second trip to Two Bros. was just a month after the first, but I had to get back there to see if the brisket was great twice in a row, and I forgot to try the cold smoked shrimp and stuffed jalapenos back in January. It was a great day, so I headed right for the patio. From there I could see the pits, and I noticed the same pit master wasn't working. I wondered how this might affect the meat.
The brisket was good. Not as good as the first time, but it was still a very good version of smoked beef. Slices were surrounded by a nice smokey crust and a line of well rendered fat. Each slice was well seasoned and smokey, but the texture was a bit tough. All of the flavor was still there, but it just needed more time on the smoker. A cut I didn't try on the first trip was the sliced pork, and I was glad I got this chance. The pork was tender and full of flavor from the slightly spicy seasoning. The smokiness was there, and the meat was very moist. This was very good pork.
The two items I couldn't resist from the appetizer menu were the cold smoked shrimp and the bacon wrapped stuffed jalapenos. The bacon had crisped well in the smoker, and the spice of the jalapeno was tempered with a cream cheese center. The combination of flavors and texture were incredible. The cold smoked shrimp, while well cooked and nicely seasoned, was missing any real smoke flavor. By all means order it, and you'll enjoy it, but don't expect much smokiness.
Even after a second visit, this joint still holds up. I'll be sure to make another visit next time I'm in town.
01/2010: I know we're well into the last week of January, but this is my official first review of the New Year. I visited this joint when most others were closed on New Year's day. It was nearly empty, so I had the place to myself, and I was free to snap away with the camera without anyone paying attention, or so I thought. Ordering here is done meat market style by asking for 1/4 pound of this, and few ribs here and there. This allowed me to sample a variety of meats, which is always my preference. Of course brisket and pork ribs made it on the red plastic tray as did sausage and their specialty cherry glazed baby back ribs. Based on staff recommendation, I got a side of hum drum mac & cheese, and the zesty vinegar slaw was gratis.
The brisket slices were perfect. Just the right amount of perfectly rendered fat was left on each slice. A deep smokiness found its way into the meat, and each slice was moist, tender and every bite made me crave another. The cherry glazed baby backs were surprisingly meaty and moist. The rub wasn't overpoweringly sweet, an it worked well with the meat which was adequately smoky. The large pork ribs had too much rub to allow a nice bark to form. The meat had decent smokiness and good flavor, but it was a bit dry. Sausage was a good, if not remarkable version of a beef and pork mixture with good snap and decent flavor.
As I was snapping away with my Nikon, a guy walked by from the back door, and looked at me curiously. When I had finished he walked by again asking if I enjoyed the meal. I learned that he was the pit master here. Jason Dady may be the chef, but this is the guy (pictured above) who mans the fire. That fire is first started with lump charcoal, then post oak is used for the smoking process in these giant steel pits. After sampling their well smoked meats, I was surprised to learn that they'd been open for less than a year. Here's hoping they stick around so I can go back and try the smoked shrimp.
Posted by BBQ Snob at 7:27 AM
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.
-THE PROPHETS OF SMOKED MEAT
-THE PROPHETS OF SMOKED MEAT