interviews

Interview: Joe Riscky of Riscky’s Barbeque

Pitmaster: Riscky’s Barbeque; opened 1927 Age: 38 Smoker: Wood-fired rotisserie smoker Wood: Post oak I sat down for lunch at the original location of Riscky’s Barbeque on Azle in Fort Worth. It sits just north of the Stockyards in a building from the fifties. Joe Riscky, great grandson to and named after the founder Joe Riscky, gave me a tour and we talked while we walked. When I asked Joe to describe the barbecue here, he said “we’re a…

Interview: Kim Dunn of Pit Stop Bar-B-Q

Owner/Pitmaster: Pit Stop Bar-B-Q; opened 2006 (2010 in current location) Age: 58 Smoker: Wood-fired offset smoker Wood: Pecan Kim Dunn learned to cook in her native Korea before she left in 1978. She then got her training in Louisiana cuisine by working at Popeye’s before shifting over to Texas barbecue as an owner of Colter’s BBQ locations within military bases. She retired from the corporate food world and decided to open a small barbecue joint that featured homemade…

Pitmaster Interview: Vencil Mares of Taylor Cafe

Owner/Pitmaster: Taylor Cafe; opened 1948 Age: 90 Smoker: Wood-fired offset smoker Wood: Post Oak Vencil Mares (pronounced like a group of female horses, not the planet) normally sits at the end of the bar just inside the side door of Taylor Cafe. For this interview we went into the only place in the restaurant with air conditioning – Vencil’s office. Even inside the office the train whistle from the tracks running beside the restaurant was deafening, and they happened about…

Interview: Billy McDonald of Mac’s Bar-B-Que, Part II

Owner/Pitmaster: Mac’s Bar-B-Que; Opened 1955 (1982 in current location) Age: 60 Smoker: Indirect Heat Wood-Fired Pit Wood: Hickory Billy McDonald is a second generation pitmaster at Mac’s Bar-B-Que in Dallas. Last week we ran the first part of the interview with Billy that featured his father’s career in barbecue. It wasn’t until they moved to their current building in 1982 that Billy became an aspiring barbecue man. He had a much different plan for his life when he left…

Interview: Billy McDonald of Mac’s Bar-B-Que, Part I

Owner/Pitmaster: Mac’s Bar-B-Que; Opened 1955 (1982 in current location) Age: 60 Smoker: Indirect Heat Wood-Fired Pit Wood: Hickory The McDonalds have been a fixture in the Dallas barbecue scene since 1949. Mac’s has moved around a bit, but Billy McDonald has no plans to leave his current spot on Main Street just outside Deep Ellum. He sat down with me at one of the tables inside after he’d completed lunch service. His partner, and the only other employee at…

Interview: Bill and Francene Barton of Neely’s

Owners: Neely’s, opened 1927 Age: 66 Smoker: Wood-fired steel offset smoker Wood: Hickory Neely’s in Marshall, Texas is famous for being very old and for serving a Brown Pig sandwich. It’s by far their most popular menu item, but of course Bill wants to remind you that people really like their burgers too. If you don’t know what a Brown Pig sandwich is, the Longview News Journal described it well in an article last year. “The Brown Pig is…