ROSEBUD: Jake 'N' Boo's Backdoor Bar & Grill
341 W Main St.
Rosebud, TX 76570
Open Thur 11-8, F-Sat 11-9, Sun 11-6
There's something ironic about the feeling I get after seeing the walls of a barbecue joint lined with competition trophies. This should be a good sign that several panels of judges have found the owner's barbecue enjoyable, albeit in a different setting. Unfortunately, there rarely seems to be a correlation between barbecue competition prowess and great restaurant barbecue, which is why I was suspicious when walking into Jake 'N' Boo's. There were trophies and plaques everywhere and not another customer in sight during our mid-afternoon visit. We sat down after ordering a meat sampler plate at the bar.
Just as important as the cooking of barbecue in a restaurant setting is how it is held through the day. This isn't a challenge on the competition circuit where the meat is sliced, plated and served immediately after smoking. One method for holding is to keep the meat in a broth or drippings, or to use those drippings to brush the meat. This can awaken dry meat and provide an extra oomph of flavor. An overly salty broth can also overwhelm the meat. This was the case at Jake 'N' Boo's where every item we tasted had a similar greasy film and overly salty flavor. The chicken stood out as being extremely overcooked and mushy while the rib and brisket were both incredibly dry despite the added moisture. It was just a sad plate of barbecue, and I can't say that I saw enough potential to think it would have been much better a few hours earlier.