Saturday, January 1, 2011

Rudy's Country Store & BBQ

DENTON: Rudy's Country Store & BBQ
520 S Interstate 35 E

Denton, TX 76205


Open Sun-Thur 6am-10pm, F-Sat 6am-11pm

There are quite a few Rudy's around the state, and it is not my intention to eat at all of them, but I was getting hungry for BBQ on a road trip after a stop in Ardmore, Oklahoma to determine that Blue Pig BBQ is no longer open on Sundays (contrary to their website). I'd been to this location just south of Denton once before, but it had been quite a few years. I decided to order a mix of ribs, brisket and turkey.

Fatty brisket was trimmed complete of crust and fat and had little flavor outside of roast beef coated with rendered fat. The lack of smoke was more confounding after trying the smoke-rich lean brisket. After a few trips to multiple Rudy's and trying the fatty and lean brisket side-by-side I must say that the lean brisket is consistently more flavorful and more smoky. St. Louis ribs were overcooked and lacked smoke, but were well seasoned and plenty moist. The spare ribs were a poor excuse for smoked meat. After seeing the limp, thin and soggy rib before me that had broken into three pieces after brief handling from the tongs, I was surprised that someone decided to serve it. Besides the lean brisket, the turkey was the best item. As is normal for Rudy's the meat was smokey, moist and perfectly seasoned. I now know to just go straight for lean brisket and turkey at Rudy's, and the chocolate pudding's not bad either.

Rating **
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Tom K said...

I sometimes go to a Rudy's near my home and I always get the "moist" (fatty) brisket, but I ask for "outside" cuts, so I get plenty of bark and fat. It's usually pretty good if you make that request. Also, do you like their creamed corn? I think it's real good.

themexcellentcook said...

The Rudy's in Round Rock serves up moist brisket that is well-seasoned and has a nice bark on it, if you're lucky to get those pieces. It was the first Rudy's my husband and I had ever been to, and when we find ourselves in the Austin area, we always make it a point to stop at that location. We've been to the one you review here, and the Frisco location, and were not impressed by either of those two locations.

veeral said...

I think the key here is taking the initiative in choosing the cut of meat. At a real BBQ joint, the pitmaster has some sense of what makes a good slice. At Rudy's the high school help may have no idea what makes a good slice. If you are direct and precise, you can get a pretty decent slice of brisket at Rudys.

Anonymous said...

We usually hit the Rudy's in Round Rock when we are down in the Austin area. We've also hit Rudy's in Waco. both were good, but I agree that they really shouldn't trim off the bark/burnt ends. Good brisket ends are like candy! Last time I went to the one in Waco, the meat was good, but seemed a little too salty and needed more smoke flavor (talking brisket and ribs). The last time in round Rock I found the ribs too greasy. As for their creamed corn - YUCK! Creamed corn is NOT whole kernel corn swimming in a gelatinous goo! proper creamed corn is fresh cut from the cob, then you scrape the cob to get the bits and juice. THEN you cook it down and let the natural starch from the corn thicken the batch. NEVER use corn starch or any other artificial thickener. Do you hear me Rudy's!?!?!??!

Dennis the Hungry Hunter said...

Every year I stop at the Rudy's at the Bourne Stage Coach Exit outside San Antone and pick up a BIG to go order on my way to New Orleans on my way back from hunting in the beautiful Hill Country of Texas...This year I was about 30 minutes early before the Restaurant was open when I went into the store to ask if I could PLEASE by a bunch of Brisket to carry to my cousins...The Manager said no way...I'd have to wait thirty minutes...SO...I stopped somewhere else down the road and got a fine bunch of brisket for my cousins...I don't believe Old Rudy would have ever turned me away as they had it pulled off the smoker and were already putting it in the boxes to serve later...This was on Wednesday November 24th...Next year I'll drive right on past this exit...I was shocked to be turned away...I understand when someone is not open yet but customer service means everything to me and I sure didn't get it last week...I have emailed all the guys at my camp and we're stopping just down the road from now on when we are on our way to the camp and when heading out...Sorry Rudy...Wish you had been there to take care of me as it should have been!!!


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.