Straight from the airport, we headed to Lockhart, Texas. We couldn't wait to get smoky meat in our mouth. Last time, we declared Lockhart as BBQ bliss. Smitty's was life changing. We have never looked at BBQ the same. This trip we went to Kreuz Market first. We had a nice appetizer of sausage and brisket.
Next, we returned to Smitty's. The smoke stung my eyes and soon as we stepped inside. The smell is unmistakable. We were in for a treat. We got a sack of pork ribs, no beef were offered, and a smidge of brisket. The ribs had a beautiful glaze and they were mouthwatering, but they weren't as satisfying as the beef last time. We still weren't too fond of the brisket here.
After Smitty's, we walked over to Black's. They have great sides so we chose a few and then ordered a few beef ribs and a link of jalapeno sausage. The link was just as good as we remembered. The beef ribs left us stunned. Holy moly, these were Fred Flintstone style. No joke. Not only were they huge, but they were moist, tender and dripped with flavor. Incredible.
Eating all three was an impossible task. We ate one and were stuffed silly. Being the gluttons, we are, we still found room for a slice of pecan pie ala mode. We missed the Blue Bell ice cream, but the sweetness hit the spot.
We thought we'd never eat again, but we couldn't resist siren's call. We drove out to Driftwood to see if the Salt Lick is as good as they say. This place is quite the destination. It's a quick drive from Austin, in the lush hill country. I was pleasantly surprised to see vineyards on site. Before lunch, we did a wine tasting; 5 wines for $10. Frank and I chose different wines so we were able to sample all of the whites; the Viognier was my favorite so I had two of those. I wanted to get there early to beat the rush, and it paid off, there was no wait for a table. But by the time we were through it snaked around the grounds.
Look at these meats!!
Glorious, isn't it?
We had to try it all. We shared a sampler plate and then ordered sides of beef ribs and burnt ends. It didn't disappoint, but it was the sausage that stood out and the burnt ends are as good as it gets. The bark is beautiful and ridiculously delicious. I had my sights set on blackberry cobbler, but I couldn't eat another bite. I had to surrender.
We took a day off from BBQ, but we had to get one last fix before we went home. We decided to drive out to Llano, Texas to try Cooper's Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que. It came highly recommended and we learned why. It's different from the others, they use a heavy hand when it comes to pepper. I loved the extra kick and I wouldn't think it possible, but their sausage made the others pale in comparison. We tried a bit of everything and it was really good, exception being the pork ribs, because those were out of this world delicious. Truly outstanding. We brought ribs and sausage home. It traveled well.
Someday, we'll make it to Franklin's. I'm not that gun-ho to wait for hours smelling BBQ and risk not getting a taste. There are also a half dozen or so others that are supposed to be fantastic, too. Maybe, next time?