Reviews

Billy’s Old Fashion BBQ

You could lose a lot of tire tread and a little bit of soul looking for good barbecue in East Texas. But if you should find yourself in Jasper, mosey down Main Street, past the modest houses and packs of free-range dogs, and make the acquaintance of George Ralph Mahathay, better known as Billy, the nicest pitmaster you’re likely to come across hereabouts. His establishment isn’t much to look at—a tiny wood-frame, tin-roofed building equipped…

Joseph’s Riverport Barbecue

A devastating fire in 2012 destroyed all but the thin brick facade of this joint, which faces Polk Street in downtown Jefferson. But once the flames were extinguished, owner and pitmaster Stephen Joseph started rebuilding, and seven months later he was christening the new Bewley smoker. The refurbished interior is now decorated with all manner of farm implements and just enough but not too many mounted animal heads. Place your order at the far end…

Buzzie’s Bar-B-Q

Ordering brisket is a reflexive action for most eaters of Texas barbecue. And at a joint like Buzzie’s, with a reputation for expertly smoked beef, it’s truly a no-brainer. Where your tough choices come into play at this Hill Country standby is farther down the menu. If for some crazy reason you decide to order just one additional item, trust us when we tell you to go for the spareribs. This would mean forgoing the…

Hitch-N-Post BBQ

Billy Ray Nelson is the former sheriff in these parts, but he had always dreamed of making real-deal barbecue his full-time gig once he retired. His wish came true four years ago, and boy, is that a good thing for the rest of us. Situated in a wide-open field on FM 350 and marked with a couple of banners (one sporting the joint’s name, the other advertising a ribeye special and what looked to be…

Cousin’s Bar-B-Q

With six locations—two of which are in the Dallas–Fort Worth International Airport—this family-run operation could be considered a chain now and, thus, not admissible for this list. But rules are made to be broken, especially when a plateful of expertly smoked meat is before you. We still like the original Cousin’s. It doesn’t have much curb appeal: a plain joint located in a shopping center set back from a six-lane road on the outskirts of…

McMillan’s Bar-B-Q

The tiny town of Fannin is famous for exactly two things. The first is for being the site of the 1836 Battle of Coleto Creek during the Texas Revolution, where Texians under Colonel James W. Fannin surrendered to the Mexican army, only to be marched to Goliad and executed en masse several days later. The second (and happier) source of the town’s notoriety is that it is home to a tidy red building with a…

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