Reviews, News, & Interviews

Carnal in Austin

There’s a new beef rib in town. Carnal has found a temporary home in Austin, the epicenter of the Texas barbecue boom, while their spot back home, Brooklyn’s Smorgasburg, is closed for the winter. James Zamory and Aaron Saurer, the duo that make up Carnal, draw inspiration from Texas’s smoked meats, but they don’t cook barbecue, nor do they claim to. Instead, they serve a focused menu of large meat cuts cooked in their own fat, so they…

Cele Store

The Cele Store was built in 1891, originally opened as the Richland Saloon, and it looks like it got its last coat of fresh paint about a decade later. Without all the trucks parked in the grass outside of the Manor joint, you wouldn’t expect that the barbecue joint inside was open for business, but they’ve been smoking meat here since 1953 when Marilyn Weiss and her husband, Marvin, bought the place. Since then it has…

BBQ News: 01/20 – 01/26

– “I think people that have secrets in cooking, I really think they’re a**holes.” – Pat Martin:     – The KCBS is now accepting nominations for their BBQ Hall of Fame through March 1st. – Killen’s Barbecue in Pearland is now open for dinner, and they’re planning a second location in The Heights neighborhood of Houston. – The Caboose BBQ has just opened south of Houston in Alvin. Country singer Wade Bowen is an…

Weighing Your Options

Update: Mark Loeffler, communications director for the Texas Department of Agriculture*, provided more details on their enforcement effort. Operation Maverick was launched in June 2015 to target any business buying or selling goods by weight. He didn’t have current numbers, but by March 2016, they had inspected 1,400 barbecue joints. Loeffler** hopes the enforcement effort covers enough businesses, including barbecue joints, that Operation Maverick can “put itself out of business,” but inspections are ongoing. More and…

Smoked in Texas: Oysters Gilhooley at Gilhooley’s

Oyster shells crackled under the car tires as I pulled into Gilhooley’s in San Leon. The parking lot is paved with them, and a pile taller than me rose like a dune at one end of the parking lot. A storm was rolling into the small town on the Gulf Coast, and beside the restaurant two men were splitting as much wood as they could before the sky opened up. Through a screen door was the…

Pinkerton’s Barbecue

Houston has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to barbecue. The new barbecue joints keep coming, and they continue to impress. The latest is from 27-year-old Grant Pinkerton, who had a line wrapped out of his door and down to the end of the building in the Heights when he held a soft opening of Pinkerton’s Barbecue on December 3. Thankfully for those seeking a barbecue lunch, things have died down a bit since then….

The Year Old Brisket

After thousands of barbecue meals, I’ve never been struck ill by smoked meat. Maybe it’s the long cooking time, or the preservative qualities provided by a layer of wood smoke, or maybe I’ve just been lucky. Either way, I put that streak to the test over the weekend. “How long can you keep a brisket in the fridge before it goes bad,” a friend asked me one morning. It was April of last year, and…

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