Micklethwait Craft Meats

1309 Rosewood Ave.
Austin, TX 78702

Phone: (512) 791-5961
Hours: W-Sat 11-3 & 4:30-8, Sun 11-3
Website: www.craftmeats.com
Twitter: @CraftMeats
Facebook: www.facebook.com/MIcklethwaitCraftMeats/info

Opened 2012
Pitmaster Tom Micklethwait
Method Oak in an indirect heat pit

TMBBQ Rating: 4.25

TMBBQ Buzz

Comments from our joint finder app.
Before I went to Ruby's we stopped at freedmens on 24th&san gabriel in Austin (bbq hopping for lunch). Brisket @$18/lb but the taste was soooo good. Moist was not fatty and melts in mouth. Has nice pepper crust. Lean was also tender. Sauce was good. You know bbq is great when you can eat it without having to add bbq sauce. Good stuff. Gotta try it.
Terry r @ , 2015-05-06 19:10:33
Here at Ruby's in Austin off 29th&guad. Not to be confused with Rudy's. This joint has been around forever. Haven't been here for 25yrs. I give it 1 star and only because creamed cole slaw was good. Seems like They were keeping the brisket around for me that long as well. It is pretty bad. No flavor even though slight smoke ring. As my wife put it..tastes like lunch meat. Basically tastes like corned beef. Couldn't finish more than half a slice. Will mix it into eggs tomorrow morning for hash. That's all meat is worth. At $22/lb, it's most expensive meat I have come across. Crazy. Crazy. Crazy. Don't waste time or hard earned money.
Terry r @ , 2015-05-06 19:05:25
Chopped beef sandwich was the real deal... Sausage was pretty good. Interesting atmosphere as it is just inside of a gas station
kyle craven @ Casstevens Cash & Carry, 2015-05-06 16:56:43
Really enjoyed it. Brisket had great flavor, fresh cut fries were excellent. Tracy is a fantastic waitress.
beau smith @ Cokers, 2015-05-04 17:39:11
Brown's BBQ in Austin. South Lamar. Beef ribs: small but have good flavor. If they were cooked any longer they would have become tough. The brisket had very good taste a little bit of a smoke ring but the fat should've been rendered down unlock more on the moist cut. The lien cut was very good and tender. The sauce had a sweetness to it that was just a bad right but could've used a little pepper. I had two sides the coleslaw and the mac & cheese. The coleslaw was too vinegary but the mac & cheese was quite good but had a Val Vita cheese taste to it. All in all I would give it a 3 1/2 out of five stars for the ribs and for the lean brisket I'd give it a four out of five. For the moist have to give it two out of five just because half of the meat I got was just fat size since they paid $14 a pound for half of what I should've got if you go make sure that they trim the moist before they weigh it
Terry r @ , 2015-05-04 00:43:59
@Rafter J's in Iowa Park. Passed this place for sometime. Curious about a BBQ and Canjun food place. They do not have ribs on the two meat plate. I ordered ribs while my husband ordered sliced brisket and sausage. The ribs had a good texture and were tender. No spice that I could tell were on the ribs. BBQ sauce is tangy and slightly sweet. The ribs do benefit from the sauce. Sausage is an Eckridge type. Brisket did not have much of a smoke ring snd was a little dry. There was not much in the way of spices on the brisket. The brisket did have a little bit of bark but not much and some smoke flavor. Next we will try the Canjun fair.
Mae McKnight @ , 2015-05-03 23:48:13
Wet brisket was great. Pork spare red dry and not cleaned. Good meal over all.
Ted hindes @ Rudy’s Bar-B-Q, 2015-05-02 18:31:18
Had the brisket and pork ribs. Both excellent. Just the right amount of smoke.
scott7 @ Virgie’s Bar-B-Que, 2015-05-02 01:18:59
More Buzz →

Review

Micklethwait 10

October 29, 2013

There’s a trailer in East Austin that is creating a new target for what it means to be a complete barbecue joint. Micklethwait Craft Meats not only serves great smoked meats, they also bake their own bread and desserts, all the sides and sauce are homemade, and they start with dry beans from a sack rather than from a can. As if the time required to make great barbecue wasn’t already a big enough hurdle, Tom Micklethwait demands more of himself and his staff.

How he does it, I’m not sure, but afternoon naps must be involved. That was probably the case when I was there last week and Tom wasn’t on site. [Read more about Tom’s schedule here]. He would have been pleased with the line that had developed by 12:30. Micklethwait has been steadily gaining popularity, but any sort of line has been confoundingly absent on my previous visits dating back to February. Maybe it was the recent publicity they received after the Cooking Channel show Eat St. filmed at the trailer two weeks ago. Maybe it was overflow from the always lengthy line at Franklin just a half mile away. No matter the cause, this is a joint that deserves the attention.

Micklethwait 03

Brisket, Lamb Sausage, and Chicken

Tom Micklethwait (the “th” is silent) opened this trailer last December. Two months later I was pleased to find lamb sausage on the menu along with other barbecue staples. That day the brisket was dry, the chicken lacked smoke, and the pork spare rib was a bit tough. The sausage, however, was stunning. It had bits of tangerine zest and the lamb had been mixed with beef instead of the usual companion of pork. It provided an aggressive meatiness with every flavorful bite.

Micklethwait 02

Pork Spare Ribs

A few months later I popped into town already late for a meeting. Meats are not sliced in front of you, but rather tickets are completed in a fashion similar to a short order cook. My to-go order still came out quickly, and the other party at the meeting was the beneficiary of some great barbecue. We fought over the jalapeño cheese grits. They are light in texture and rich on flavor at the same time. They’d replace macaroni & cheese on every local menu if everyone could make cheese grits like Micklethwait. The large pork spare ribs were just as stunning. These were grown-up ribs that make candy-coated baby backs feel like child’s play. The salt penetrates deep from what must be an overnight rub, and the large pellets of black pepper mingle with the hammy flavor with every tug of meat. Tug you must, but not uncomfortably. Meat clings to the bones a bit, but they’ll be clean when you’re through. You’ll also know you’ve eaten. With sides and bread, just one could be the meaty centerpiece of a whole meal.

Micklethwait 07

Kielbasa

“Sausage is a playground.” is what Tom Micklethwait told another interviewer recently. That’s where his creativity goes way beyond traditional links. That lamb sausage was stunning as was a simple kielbasa that was so technically sound it made me wonder why he bothers with anything else, but I’m glad he does. A pork belly andouille from a previous visit was the only misstep, although slight. Despite the incredible flavor, it was too fatty to hold together, and the juiciness seemed to affect the still-chewy casings as well.

Micklethwait 01

Pork Belly Andouille

Brisket may have been the weak link a few months ago, but it has come along nicely. Last week, the slice from the fatty end cut was intense with smoke and pepper and melting fat. A slice not from the end wasn’t as tender. The meat could have pulled apart a tad easier, but this was still better than most in town. Because of that, I almost felt bad ordering the simple chopped beef sandwich. I’m so glad I did. The meat was chopped to order and served on a homemade roll. I topped it with the excellent pickles, a bit of red onion and some of the vinegar-heavy sauce. The first bite was sublime. Hidden inside the top of the bun was a layer of cheese baked in. The heft of the bun complemented the juicy, smoky beef beautifully.

Micklethwait 11

Fatty Brisket Slice

Micklethwait 06

Brisket End Cut

Micklethwait 08

Chopped Brisket Sandwich

Thankfully the pork rib was still great, and so was every single item on the plate with it. Pinto beans were well spiced with a texture that comes from using dry beans to start with. The potato salad was simple and well executed. There was just enough dressing to bind the tender potatoes with the bell pepper and chives. The plate was clean when I finished, thanks in part to the white bread. It is homemade by former pastry chef William Ankeney who is now on the Micklethwait staff.

Micklethwait 05

Combo Plate

Anthony also has a hand in two of the best barbecue desserts in town. I’m a sucker for buttermilk pie, and the one here is both firm and yielding at the same time. The marshmallow filled, chocolate covered moon pies are also incredible, but make sure they warm up a bit before eating them. Marshmallow cream right out of the fridge isn’t a great texture. Either one will make a gratifying end to one of the best complete barbecue meals you can have in Texas.

Micklethwait 04

Moon Pie

This level of attention to sides and accouterments isn’t likely to catch on in rural joints, especially where the pitmaster’s time is already too taxed with the pits alone. That’s fine with me since there should always be a place for cheap, fluffy white bread and dill pickle chips from a five-gallon bucket. But in a more confined and competitive environment of the city, it’s not a stretch to imagine Micklethwait’s attention to each detail becoming a real influence on the Austin barbecue scene. Maybe that means bakers will now be in demand whenever a new barbecue joint opens in Austin, but I do hope others start following the lead of Tom Micklethwait and his staff.

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