Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Van's Pig Stand (Original)

OKLAHOMA: Van's Pig Stand

717 E Highland St

Shawnee, OK 74801


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


They've been serving BBQ out of this building since 1935. The original location in Wewoka, Oklahoma just 40 minutes west had opened in 1928 making this a business that has lasted 82 years. That's some real staying power especially since Shawnee is a bit off the beaten path in Eastern Oklahoma. We found our way there easy enough after a forty-five minute drive from OKC. Our 11:15 arrival time was well planned as we had no line to contend with, but once we left an hour later the line was to the door.

This was the first stop of the day for my daughter, my brothers-in-law and myself so we loaded up with quite a few menu items. Van's certainly does potatoes well with crispy curly fries that are addictive, and their famous 'Van-ized' potatoes which are twice baked potatoes with their special blend of ingredients. Okra was hot and crispy and the beans had a bit of chile heat and good smokiness, but let's get to the meat. Hot links were the very fine grained, red-dyed versions found throughout this state. They were a bit dry with little smoke. Ribs were much better. The flavor was robust with smoke and spices, while the meat was moist and came easily off the bone. No meal at Van's is complete without a Pig Sandwich. The meat has a stewed texture with little remaining crust, but the flavor is distinct with the sauce and the signature mustardy relish.

The brisket was a very good version of this meat. While the slices continues to dry out as it sat, the meat had incredible flavor. The meat was tender and smoky with great crust and seasoning, and I'd certainly recommend it as long as you make it the first thing to eat off your plate. Maybe it was the historic building and the anticipation during the drive, but this Van's far surpassed what we tried a while back at an Oklahoma City branch of this chain. One thing for sure is that the original Van's is worth the trip.

Rating ***
Van's Pig Stand on Urbanspoon


Deux lai said...

Wow. the food looks real nice.. Wanna try it one day

Anonymous said...

My favorite barbecue... this is what i judge que' by


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.