Reviews

Pit-Stop Bar-B-Q

The joint’s not big. There are just a few tables, and most customers take their order to go. Behind the small counter is Kim Dunn who opened this place four years ago after moving from nearby Belton. As someone who seems to genuinely enjoy her job, there’s a good chance she’ll be smiling when she takes your order. Choose wisely, because there’s a large menu to pick from. Dunn’s work in the food service industry…

Mexican/Canadian BBQ

I was on vacation in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. I should have been looking for local seafood or hidden gem taquerias, but it was a sign that read “BBQ” that caught my eye during the cab ride from the airport to our hotel. The following day I tracked down the JD’s BBQ outpost near the beach (there are two locations in town) because I had to see the menu. Brisket, ribs, pulled pork…why not? When was…

The Cattle Exchange

Canadian, Texas is out there. In the already secluded Texas Panhandle, it stands alone anchoring the northeast corner. Amarillo is over a hundred miles away, and the next town of any consequence is two hundred miles east in Oklahoma City. With so little to visit nearby, Canadian has worked to make their downtown an oasis of handsome structures and brick covered streets for the three thousand residents here. The historic Palace Theater was recently renovated,…

Spicy Mike’s Bar-B-Q Haven

Mike Havens was done being an electrician. He had a lot more fun making barbecue for his crew, so he got a bigger smoker. That steel offset smoker sits out front by the road, but it’s mainly for show unless Havens has a catering gig. The workhouse now is a hand-me-down. After he purchased the business from the previous owner, Butch Testerman, Haven was surprised to find a Smoke-Master cabinet smoker by J&R Manufacturing still sitting…

Pickles BBQ & Icehouse

I saw a flight of “flavor infused” pickles on the menu, and I was immediately powerless. I had to order them. I was dining alone during lunch at this sports bar/live music venue/barbecue joint hybrid in a suburb north of Fort Worth. Olympics curling was on the television in my booth, but even the technicolor uniforms of the various countries couldn’t compete with the brightly dyed stacks of pickle chips. The mango con chile flavor…

Virdinski’s Rub Shack

Amarillo can be a tough place for barbecue purists. Chris Virden is trying hard to make good barbecue at the three-month old Virdinski’s, but he can’t always make it the way he’d like to. In addition to his dozen years working for a local steakhouse, Virden is also a serious contender in the barbecue competition circuit. He knows competition style barbecue won’t fly in a restaurant setting. The flavors are just too bold and too…

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