Over the next few weeks, Daniel Vaughn, the BBQ Snob, will post some of his thoughts here on SideDish. Feel free to ask him questions or question his picks. Ladies and gentlemen, and I use the terms loosely, Mr. BBQ Snob.
When we first discussed doing a “Best of BBQ” list, D Magazine of course wanted to know if we could do the list with just joints in Dallas. Knowing that would make for a very short article, I proposed that we expand it to the greater DFW area. Any true ‘cue geek will travel for great barbecue, so I wasn’t shy about listing joints as far as Red Oak since I know Randy’s has the goods, but getting any deeper than 16 could have meant a watered down line-up. To whittle down the list, I started with all of the posts on my blog, Full Custom Gospel Barbecue, that related to places in the area to determine which places that had visited showed promise. Then it was time to buckle down and research every remaining joint I could find in DFW. This wasn’t some review of other “Best Of” lists, we’re talking scouring phone books for obscure spots.
Jump, please.I went to as many as possible, and returned to those that showed promise so that I could gauge their consistency. Once I had the final list, I made sure to make one more visit to each for final rankings. Simply put, even with four visits to Off the Bone, a substandard morsel of smoked meat never entered this pie hole. That’s what put them at the top. Sure, the list is skewed towards joints that use all-wood smokers, but the rankings were all based on the taste of the meat, and those that used gas-fired smokers generally turned out inferior smoked protein. I had my fair share of potato salad and fried okra, but the meat was the important part here, and nobody’s cobbler, no matter how good, helped break any ties. Many miles, dollars, and Tums later, I was satisfied enough in my research to rank them #1 to #16.
The magazine with Vaughn’s barbecue list, with gorgeous photos by Kevin Marple, is on newsstands today. It’s also online. Read it and let’s discuss.