BBQ’in in Texas isn’t just a way to spend a soggy summers evening, it’s a way of life, a mastered art, and a passion that’s worth discovering on its famous BBQ trail. Veggies be warned, when it comes to Texan cuisine ‘carne’ is king. And with each region offering up a staggering range of curing, smoking, and grilling methods it can be mind-boggling to know where to start in the quest to find the ultimate Texas-style barbecue.
Luckily that’s where the Texas Barbecue Trail comes in. The trail is a semi-loop, starting an hour’s drive northeast of Austin and making your way southbound that takes in four sleepy, picture perfect towns; Taylor, Elgin, Luling and Lockhart. BBQ traditionalists claim that the state’s best barbecue comes from central Texas, an area settled in the 19th century by European immigrants who brought their old-country meat-smoking and sausage-making traditions with them. We won’t argue with that.
With so much on offer, it’s hard to pick one joint to dine in. We recommend that you try a bit of everything at a selection of our favourites:
Louie Mueller’s Barbecue in Taylor still stands just as it did in back in 1906. The beef brisket is served swaddled in butcher paper with Texas-style accompaniments of spongy white bread, pickles and onion slices.
For something different:
Southside Market & Barbeque in Elgin is renowned for its “hot guts” — an all-beef sausage, best washed down with a Big Red soda.
For no frills:
The City Market in Luling serves only two meals mastered to perfection: brisket and pork ribs.
Black’s Barbecue in Lockhart is famed for its garlic and jalapeño cheese that enhances the flavour of its sausages.