801 Elmore St.
Marshall, TX 75670
Open Tues-Sun 11-7
A few months ago I realized I was closing in on 500 reviews. Not visits, but 500 unique barbecue joints visited while writing this blog. I wondered aloud then if I should contrive it to be somewhere special or notable, or if I should just let it happen. The feedback from readers was mixed, so I thought I would just let it happen. If the joint wasn't great it would be more fitting anyway given that most of those first 499 BBQ joints weren't really notable. It wasn't until a couple of weeks after this visit to Bar-B-Q Express in Marshall that I realized it was the big #500. I'm glad to say it was some serviceable barbecue served in a bleak part of the state for well smoked meats.
|Photo by Nicholas McWhirter|
The chopped beef sandwich wasn’t scooped out of a steam table vat of pre-chopped meat. I watched as a fresh brisket was sliced thick then chopped on wood block. The knife man told me it was lean sandwich, but I had just watched him chop some very fatty slices from the point end of the brisket. No matter as the meat was well smoked and the fat well rendered. The texture of the sandwich was silky with a spicy sauce. The hickory smoke was prominent even with the heavy amount of sauce.
If you travel into East Texas, don't expect to get heavily smoked meats on butcher paper sans sauce in the Central Texas style. Meat around here will be over-tender and saucy and served on styrofoam. Sometimes it will even be pretty decent which is why Bar-B-Q Express might be notable after all.