I would a whole lot rather you taste the flavor of the meat before you put anything on it. Taste the time and energy that went into it.
Whole Hog Extravaganza and BBQ MBA Event 2013 via eatocracy.cnn.com
<<Update: This location has closed, but there are two open locations in Abilene.>>
My favorites here were the banana pudding (don't miss this), the potato salad, and the slaw.
- Brisket - Held in a pan of water, so it is warm and moist... although still a bit chewy.
- Rib - Fall off the bone. Also held in water? Pork has a serious 'funk'... mine tastes like sardines.
- Sausage - Commercial sausage... Hillshire Farms? There is a trace of spice on the finish.
The cornbread was very good. Next time, I would try the hand-cut ribeye and some homeade pie.
- Brisket - Trimmed. Lean is firm and sliced pretty thin, but still moist. Texture is good, if a bit chewy on the finish. The bark is bitter.
- Sausage - Commercial. Hillshire Farms?
- Chopped - Good.
<<Update: Looks like they closed in about 2010>>
Homey little stop on the tour, with the smallest pit we've ever seen (2 briskets). The beans were excellent, and the Cooder Nachos were tasty.
- Brisket - Little chunks. Good. Not much smoke. Smoked for a while, then wrapped and finished in the oven.
- Sausage - Salty, with a hot dog texture. "Smokey Ridge" out of Austin.
- Jalapeno Sausage - Jalapeno? Really? OK, a bit of delayed spice noticable on the finish.
Sausages were outstanding, and brisket very good. Pair with the baked beans and finish with the homeade cobbler. Solid joint... we'll need to schedule a Friday visit next time so we can try the ribs.
- Brisket - Well smoked. Thick cut. Lean has a firm texture and is very good. Fatty cut is also very good.
- Sausage - Texture is a little more coarse than Carter's Station, but comes from the same maker. This is excellent sausage, and NOT the run-of-the-mill commercial stuff that is too common in this region of the state.
- Hot Link - All beef. Insides are soft & spicy. Comes from a different supplier... "No one else has this sausage".
UPDATE: <<Charles Carter passed away in 2011, and Carter's Station has closed it's doors>>
Roadhouse that happens to serve some food (including a bit of bbq). I can recommend the "Texas Toothpicks" sausage sandwich... and help yourself to some pinto beans from the crock pot.
- Only BBQ options are chopped sandwich or sausage sandwich, so we order both
- Chopped Brisket - Is tough. Microwave reheat didn't help.
- Sausage - Salty, with a nice spice on this finish. Yummy. This stuff was even good after being microwaved!
Nice family restaurant that has bbq on the menu. The potato salad and cole slaw were very good. Next time I will opt for something cooked on the mesquite grill (steak, burger, chicken, etc).
- Brisket - Mesquite. Cooked 24 hours (mostly wrapped). Very little seasoning in the rub - just a trace of salt is noticeable. Lean is cut into thick slices that are a bit chewy.
- Rib - Mesquite flavor is good on the rib! Good color and smoke ring. Meaty rib is tough and chewy... have to really work to get any meat off the bone.
- Sausage - Possibly a beef/pork mix? Has a little spice on finish. More interesting than store-bought.
Word is that quality has declined over recent years. Our experience was sub-par.
- Brisket - Thin sliced, using another deli slicer. Water/moisture on the cuts from a covered steam pan. Piece off the top is tough, especially for being sliced so thin.
- Rib - Big ribs with the membrane on. Smoky flavor with some bitterness present. Mostly rendered.
- Sausage - Sliced lengthwise and pan-fried. Breakfast sausage spices. Would be good with eggs.
- Pork - See brisket.
I can recommend the slaw and sausage (if you like italian spices). I've heard the chicken wings are good.
- Brisket - Moist. Pulls apart, but is not fully rendered. Chewy with bitterness from bad smoke (creosote).
- Burnt Ends - Nice chunks, but super bitter
- Rib - Tender & moist... But ruined by creosote
- Sausage - Heavily laced with italian spice. Doesn't suffer as much from bad smoke due to short exposure.
- Pork - Shreds nicely, but it is bitter
<<Looks like Larua & Emmie's closed in 2005>>
Barbecue was OK, but we would've left fat and happy if they had served us the soul food first! The fried fish and fried pork chop plates were OUTSTANDING!
- Brisket - Is sliced paper-thin, and displays a nice smoke ring. It has a lean beef flavor... taste's like Arby's! Hmmm.
- Burnt Ends - Tender and smoky. Not too much salt or spice.
- Rib - Good meat & rub balance. Not too salty. Meat has good color, mild smoke, and nice flavor. However it is still tough in places.
- Rib Tips - More tender & flavorful than the rib... but a complex process to eat around the cartilage
My favorites here were the beans and ribs.
- Brisket - Not sliced paper thin. Fairly tender, but a little dry and chewy on the finish. Needs the sauce.
- Burnt Ends - Good... if you get the right ones!
- Rib - Tender and fully rendered. A little greasy, but nearly falling off the bone.
- Pork - Tender & moist. Nice.
- Fact: They cook and serve the meat "naked"... using no rub or seasonings
- Opinion: This is a nice sentiment/tradition, but using a little spice can compliment the flavor of the meat and make your taste buds sing. Why not present your product in the best possible light?