Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Hiway 77 Cafe

ROSEBUD: Hiway 77 Cafe
1101 U.S. 77
Rosebud, TX 76570
Open Tues-Sat 11-8 (BBQ Thurs-Sat Only), Sun 11-2

I had planned to stop here, but only for dessert. I'm always on the lookout for some good sweets during barbecue road trips and this place had gotten some good reviews. When we pulled up and I saw the sign advertising their new BBQ menu on Thursday, Friday and Saturday using "Honey Mesquite" as their wood of choice. To be honest I was a bit forlorn. Here I just wanted a good slice of pie, but how could I go in here without trying the smoked meats, of which I had slim hopes of being any good. Was I ever wrong.

Photo by Nicholas McWhirter
The meat was great. Baby back ribs had a thick portion of meat with a smoky crust that provided a pleasant chew. A simple seasoning only provided a positive reinforcement of the excellent flavor. The brisket had the same qualities when it came to smoke and flavor, but would have benefited from a little longer on the tall cabinet smoker out back to tender up a bit. Owner Sue Sturrock showed us the homemade pit that had a small fire at the base and a shelf that hung about five feet over the fire. Although it was technically a direct heat set-up, the meat was far enough from the fire to give everything a smoked quality. I really enjoyed the brisket and ribs, but the sausage link was the biggest surprise. It was a lean link, but not dry. The casing had a good smoke and a nice snap while the filling was coarse and packed with black pepper and garlic. We learned from Sue that it is a local specialty made at the grocery store down the road, and is known as Parcus sausage. It's named after the now defunct Parcus Market whose shell remains in downtown Rosebud.
Photo by Nicholas McWhirter
As a true Texas Cafe, there were tables surrounding us with golden chicken fried steaks covered in white gravy and thick grilled pork chops. I thought we'd had enough, but Nick insisted on some onion rings after seeing them on another table. The server said we couldn't skip the fried squash. Both were perfectly crisp, but not greasy. After a few dips into the homemade ranch, the basket was empty.


They were sold out of pie for the day, so we went with a great banana pudding that was light and rich at the same time. A peach cobbler was most certainly not from a frozen pan of pre-made stuff. Sweet peaches were paired with a thick crust heavily seasoned with cinnamon and other aromatics. Now it'll be hard to get the pie next time knowing how good the other dessert options are. I just hope they don't start running out of the barbecue.

Rating ****

1 comment:

The Barbecue Fiend said...

I drive through Rosebud every couple of months, but I've never considered stopping here to eat. Next time I will for sure. Thanks for the tip!


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.