Texas Barbecue Tour – Third Part

Post Texas 3

Black’s and Louie Mueller BBQ

We came to the third step of the traveling story that our good Faustino spent in the United States. His intention was to not do the classic BBQ tours among the various US states but to focus on one in particular and try to really know it, to eat local specialties every day for lunch and dinner in as many joints as possible so to have a credible, accurate and less touristic idea at the end of the holiday of what an inhabitant of that area really conceives with the term “barbecue”. Among the many possible areas, he choose Texas, which means pure beef, SPG (Salt Pepper and Garlic) as only conceivable rub, Beef Ribs, Texas Links and of course the mythical Brisket. The idea is to try the most famous Joint at the side of the lesser-known ones and Fausto will find on his way to get an idea as deeply as possible of what the BBQ average bid is in Texas. For the benefit of Fausto’s reader, he will score a list of everything he will see and eat, expressing a vote of 1 to 5.

In the previous episode, Fausto went first to the Salt Lick to the Snow’s BBQ, and then moved to the Kerlin and to the Kreutz Market. Always staying in the Lockhart area, southeast of Austin, he tested another big name on the texan barbecue, Black’s Barbecue, and then heading again to north, to Taylor, having a pair of axes with the famous Louie Mueller.

Black's BBQ Texas

ATMOSPHERE

Once we left Kreutz Market, we moved to Lockhart Center to visit the other great name of this simple Texas city: Black’s Barbecue, a historic joint, which has been active since 1932, which opened a second site in Austin a few years ago. The exterior appearance is very rustic and quite anonymous but the sensation greatly improves once the entrance has passed. The environment is welcoming and very “authentic”, exudes history and smoke from every corner.

Black's Texas
Black's Texas

THE MENÙ

The setting is the classical of the joints: the area with the winning prizes (though here in the specification, not particularly rich and apparently a bit dated), that of merchandising and the classic counter where to buy meat at a weight and then finding a seat. We say that Black’s look is perhaps a bit more “restaurant” than other joints, let’s say close to our self service. Even the smoker (a classic brick pit for the record) is not visible, which is quite unusual. One of the dishes for which Black’s is famous are the Beef Ribs, otherwise widely advertised even outside the restaurant and we could not quit proving them, to which we add the classic brisket and Pork Ribs to complete the picture. One thing that amazed us is the extreme efficiency of the service: it was saturday at lunch time and when we entered the room was overwhelmed by people, we were prepared for a long wait and yet in a moment all them were served and we were also sitting with our tray in front. An incredible speed!

Black's Texas
Black's Texas

THE PURCHASE

The one we tasted at Black’s was certainly among the best of our trip. The Black’s Beef Ribs are properly celebrated: they are tender as butter and have an exploding taste. Black's TexasThe greasy parts then were a fainting thing, they had everything, the right amount of smoke, the right cooking grade, the intensity of flavor. Never tried Beef Ribs like these! After a taste of this level, it is inevitable that the rest will undergo a bit of comparison. Even the Pork Ribs, strictly non saucy, were very good, probably among the best eaten in Texas, but certainly a step under their beef cousins. The Brisket was instead “just” good, I mean it was certainly a level brisket but nothing particularly memorable.

SCORES

ATMOSPHERE: 5
BRISKET: 3
PORK RIBS: 4
BEEF RIBS: 5++++
I LIKED: An exemplary efficiency.
I DISLIKED: –

As usual, I attach to you a couple of videos that give you the feeling of Black’s experience better than words: here you can find the cutting the Beef Ribs at the Counter and the time of the tasting.

Louie Muller BBQ Texas

 

ATMOSPHERE

Louie Mueller is located in Taylor a small village north of Austin and the visit was warmly recommended by our friend Marco Spaghi, who besides having made us as technical support on organizing this trip, having lived in these areas, he has introduced us to Wayne, the owner, advising him of our visit. I take this opportunity to thank Marco again for his valuable help. The setting is exactly the opposite of Black’s: an open space in which the Brick Pit is located right in the center of the room with a very simple counter positioned in front, self-service cold drinks from a classic ice-cooler and distributors of iced tea from the tap. In some ways the atmosphere is even more engaging, also here history and authenticity are in the foreground but with a greater sense of welcome, it seems to be in the trattoria of the country. Once I introduced myself at the counter, Wayne proved to be a perfect landlord, a simple, humble, kind and friendly person, showed me the cooking in the Pit, showing me with no problem procedures and some little tips, showing himself as genuinely proud to have a European guest at his joint, and farewell by giving me a cap and a apron taken from the merchandising of the local.

Mueller Texas
Mueller Texas

Mueller Texas
Mueller Texas

Mueller Texas
Mueller Texas

THE MENÙ

Here as well as from Black’s, Beef Ribs are a local attraction but also the texas links have a prominent position and are therefore available both in normal version and in the jalapeño variant, very popular in Texas. To complete course, we could not miss the Brisket and we also add some Pork Rib.

Mueller Texas
Mueller Texas

THE PURCHASE

What to say? The experience of Louie Mueller will remain imprinted in me for a long time: to say the least, an unbelievable barbecue. I find it hard to find words to describe it, but in general I did not taste anything below the pure excellence. We start from the sausages, both of them very good, a softness and a taste that literally explode in the mouth and even the Pork Ribs were really very good, meaty, juicy, a flavor bomb. But this is where the best starts: the Brisket is two wings above the others tried so far, literally defines a new point of arrival. On the Beef Ribs we thought we had tried the best at Black’s but Mueller’s overtaking them: wonderful.

SCORES

ATMOSPHERE: 5+++
BRISKET: 5+++
LINKS (NORMAL): 5
LINKS (JALAPENO): 5
PORK RIBS: 5
BEEF RIBS: 5+++++
I LIKED: Practically everything but having met Wayne deserves the first place. Really a gentleman!
I DISLIKED: Impossible to find an answer!

The experience from Louie Mueller deserved some more videos than usual: I propose the moment of Brisket cut from which we cat estimate its consistency and the first contact with Beef Ribs before their tasting.

The third stage of Fausto’s tour ends, certainly one of the most positive with two experiences to remember for a long time. The fourth and final episode is waiting for you at the end of one of the most complete reviews of the texan joints.

Waiting for the next step, have you ever been from Black’s and Louie Mueller? Do you share Fausto’s review?

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