City Meat Market

101 W. Austin
Giddings, TX 78942

Phone: 979-542-2740
Hours: Mon-€“Fri 7:30-€“5:30, Sat 7:30-€“4

Opened 1941
Pitmaster Gerald Birkelbach (since 1982)
Method Post oak; indirect-heat pit
Pro Tip For a living history lesson, just sit quietly and watch the old-timers.

TMBBQ Rating: 4.25

Texas Monthly BBQ Top 50

More Reviews

May 15, 2013

A welcome landmark on U.S. 290 between Austin and Houston is the boxy brick building of City Meat Market, in Giddings. The red painted sign reads “Bar-B-Q and Sausage”—sausage being one of their specialties. Walk through the main room, with its high ceilings, two rows of tables covered in plastic Christmas tablecloths (we last visited in late January), and aged cream-colored walls, and into the sooty back room, where you can order the famous links (80…

May 16, 2009

Thousands of drivers a day pass through Giddings along Texas Highway 290 on their way between Austin and Houston. They would all do themselves a favor if they stopped right in the center of town to sample the fine meats smoked at City Meat Market. This is a true meat market with cases full of steaks, ground beef, and sausage right inside the door. Walking back beyond the cases and through the small dining area,…

May 21, 2008

This friendly shop with blackened walls has been going strong for more than sixty years, and the locals swear by it. Though the brisket was average the day we went, everything else was excellent—pork, sausage, and chicken, all smoked with post oak in an iron-lined and tile-covered brick pit.


Comments from our joint finder app.
Great place for BBQ. Flavorful brisket and great sausage. The best place to buy fresh sausage and smoke it yourself. If your going for lunch on a weekday get there early because they run out.
Woodwill Smokers @ City Meat Market, 2016-08-22 02:58:16
Excellent ribs. Brisket had good flavor but would have preferred a fatty cut. Spicy beans were spicy. Overall a great place for BBQ.
Scott Callaway @ City Meat Market, 2016-03-22 17:43:11
So I decided to come back to city maker after a year or so away as I did not like the brisket. It was tough and no taste without using lots of the spicy peppery sauce. Take 2: I decided to ask for a taste of the brisket. All I can say is they are consistent. Brisket looked juicy when sliced piece off but I think that was the fat releasing and not meat releasing flavor. It was just as chewy and tough as before. It did seem to have more of a peppery taste than before so I will give it that. Rather go to lost pines Bbq down street for brisket. Today I decided to get the 1/2 Bbq chicken. Now THIS was extremely good and cheap. ~$4.50. It was Moist, peppery with a tad bit of excess salt but that was only on the skin. If eat meat below, you just get pepper spice and pure smoky joy. So pick how your taste buds feel that day. Skin or no skin or a bit to go with your bite. The Bbq sauce is very good. More peppery than even rudys which I like a lot. So brisket-1.5 stars. Chicken:4.5stars without sauce. 5stars with sauce.
Terry r @ City Meat Market, 2016-03-02 18:16:31
I rate it a zero for lack of a lower score FYI my baseline is always Rudys which I rate at a 2 for consistency.
Randy Deputy @ City Meat Market, 2015-11-19 18:23:23
The lady at the front was nice but it was all downhill from there. I like antique and homestyle places but this place was dirty and disgusting and deserted looking. The staff in the back was un-helpful and surly to put it nicely. The brisket was in water which diluted the taste but in the end The two bites I took were not all that bad. I just threw the rest of the $25 of barbecue away because I could not eat after going there.
Randy Deputy @ City Meat Market, 2015-11-19 18:19:10
Awesome! Just stopped in for breakfast!
Jeff Messer @ City Meat Market, 2015-07-25 14:06:45
Brisket and ribs were amazing! My girl was a bit let down they were out of sausage and lean brisket but that just left more of the fatty stuff on the table for me!
Adam Murray @ City Meat Market, 2015-06-27 19:49:28
I can't review the ribs I had because I couldn't enjoy them in that environment. I understand old, and antique, but this place is just gross.
Mark Kelley @ City Meat Market, 2015-05-12 18:17:26
More Buzz →


January 22, 2011

You may remember from the first review that City Meat Market, in Giddings, makes their own sausage for the market as well as providing it to Snow’s. After trying it at Snow’,s we wanted a good comparison of not only the sausage but the brisket as well. I enjoyed my first trip here enough to give it four stars, and they were kind enough to display the certificate I sent right next to their mention in Texas Monthly‘s 2008 Top 50 Barbecue Joints issue.

The meats together just didn’t have the same moist and tender quality of Snow’s, even the sausage. It was a bit less smoky and quite a bit dryer. It was again amazing to see just how different the same raw links can taste after a few hours in different smokers. Brisket and ribs were better than the photo reveals. The beef slices were thick with a nice line of fat but were oddly sliced with, rather than against, the grain. Even the most tender brisket will be tough to chew when sliced in that way. Ribs had great seasoning and flavor and were the smokiest meat of the bunch, but they were a bit dry. I should have asked for some longer ribs near the center of the rack, which is possible here since you get to watch as your order is being sliced right in front of you.

While it wasn’t quite as good as the first trip, it was close and would have been much better given more careful slicing of the brisket. I like this place and plan to return in hopes that it will produce an experience more like the first visit.

(This review originally appeared on Full Custom Gospel BBQ.)



    Anonymous says:

    We went through the drive through 1/22/11 around 2;15p and ordered chopped pork sandwiches. There was a bone in mine, the meat was not all chopped (2 big dry hunks)and teh sandwich as a whole was dry and not very tasty. Fro Texas BBQ, I give it a big fat F. And @ $5 ea, not worth the money. I have lived in Lufkin all my life and have enjoyed their beans, p salad and rolls for years, but after this experience, I will not go back for anything.

    DrillerAA09 says:

    I introduced my wife to Railroad BBQ in Kyle last Friday. Lunch was great. The brisket and sausage were as good as ever.

    BBQ Snob says:

    I don’t remember seeing a drive thru at City Market in Giddings. Are you sure this is where you visited?

    missyb says:

    City Meat Market in Giddings does not have a drive thru nor does it serve chopped pork sandwiches. Wrong place!!

    missyb says:

    City Meat Market in Giddings does not have a drive thru, nor does it serve chopped pork sandwiches. This is not the place that was visited. I give City Meat Market Giddings an A+!

    Kurt says:

    City Meat Market is one of my favorite places. If you make it there, you HAVE to try the pork. Perfection. Very peppery and smoky crust and tender meat with the sticky pork fat–this is what they do better than anyone else.

    Anonymous says:

    I stopped by City Meat Market in Giddings at 1:15 PM on Thursday, Oct 11th. I was informed by the kitchen that they were out of everything except a little sausage and some pork butt. We decided to eat elsewhere after taking in the dark, dirty and decrepit surroundings. This place was so filthy, I wouldn’t have wanted to sit down there.

    bubba says:

    I went there today. This was the most DISGUSTING BBQ I have ever had. I ordered brisket, and the lady pulled it out of a PAN FULL OF WATER that was serving as a warming tray next to the pit. UGH!! First, who the hell would ever put good BBQ brisket in water to keep it warm? Then, she didn’t know how to slice it, as she sliced it with the grain, instead of against it. If you do not know enough to slice brisket against the grain, you do not know what you are doing and have no business serving BBQ. I took one bite, spit it out, and left. I will never go back to that shithole again, and I highly recommend you avoid it too. Drive the 20 miles south and go to Prause meat market for a much better meal!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *