Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Outlaw's Bar-B-Que

DAINGERFIELD: Outlaw's Bar-B-Que
1404 Linda Dr.
Daingerfield, TX 75638
Open M-Sat 10:30-8

It was late and we had been suffering through some bad barbecue for most of the day. I'm always willing to try one more, so when the light was on at Outlaw's there was no question we'd be stopping. It was obvious they were ready to start stacking chairs on the tables and get the hell out, but the service was friendly with a helpful attitude. The meat carver pointed to the wood-fired Bewley pit behind him when I inquired about the smoking equipment. I was impressed and soon a plate of fatty brisket and ribs sat in front of me.

A sheen covered the well developed crust on the thick St. Louis ribs. The rub was sweet without being candy-like and a pink hue went deep into the pork signifying a well smoked rib. They were tender and still moist even at this late hour. They were simply great ribs. The soggy brisket needed some work. It was really showing its age (probably coming off the smoker earlier that morning), but it was quite late. The crusty end bits held plenty of concentrated flavor and smoke, but the overdone texture was hard to savor. Still, this was far more preferable to tough dry meat. As we were finishing, one of the guys brought over a plate of turkey saying it was by far his favorite. I was thankful for the gift, but wondered how someone working at a barbecue joint could gush about processed, precooked deli turkey that is just warmed by the smoker. Stick with the ribs here, and maybe even the brisket if you get there closer to lunch.

Rating ***

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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.