Visited 9/25/10 about 8 pm
After leaving Alma, we headed up 287 thinking we could reconnoiter a few more places as darkness fell. Unfortunately, we got stuck in a traffic jam as the Texas Motorplex race track crowd left from the day's races. Grrr. We figured that was the end of this BBQ adventure, until we stumbled onto this hopping little joint just down the road a piece. Open til 9 pm! Well alright!
These guys are competitive BBQ cook-off folks and this is their home base. There are trophies everywhere, mostly IBCA. They offer "competition style BBQ", whatever that means. We wrangled up a 3 meat plate, which arrived so quickly I was shocked. We opted for their converted railroad car dining room (nicely air conditioned) and dug right in. Right off the bat we noticed a fruity taste in the mix we couldn't quite put our finger on. We were guessing apricot, but later learned it was a dash of apple juice. Definitely a different taste. The ribs and brisket were very tender and moist, but neither had a lot of smoke flavor. The tater salad was good average chunky style but the beans were exceptional. Some of the best beans I have had outside of Llano. The beans really were tasty. Their sauce was spicy and heavy on the molasses, but without the fruity taste we found on the meat. I should have tried some on the brisket, but we had already eaten up all the brisket before opening up the sauce cup.
This was good stuff, I would definitely eat here again, but I think the apple juice just weirded us out. Plus they followed up Alma's amazing smoke flavor which would be a tough act for anyone to follow. I think when we go back to Alma, we will stop here first and give them another shot.
This was a hopping little place with a big crowd (probably from the race track down the road). They also had a small stage out back with a live country band playing. They encourage their customers to write on the walls and you could spend hours just browsing the wisdom and silliness there. I also loved the little touches like the little pig hanging out underneath the sweet tea!