I can’t imagine there’s a journalist in Texas with a deeper expense account than Daniel Vaughn. Texas Monthly dropped its once-every-four-years best barbecue list last week, filled with 50 joints that Vaughn personally verified. That’s a lot of mileage! This was the first time he oversaw the feature himself, which means when staffers reported back about finding a solid hole-in-the-wall in Laredo, the magazine’s barbecue editor booked a rental car. There’s some low-and-slow takes all over the piece—no Pecan Lodge in the top 10! No Slow Bone at all! Better luck next time, Killen’s!—that Vaughn stands behind.
On Thursday, he scooted into the Old Monk to talk these things and more with Tim Rogers and noted vegetarian Zac Crain. Order’s up:
2. Here’s The Dallas Morning News’ take on the uptick in drive-by shootings, which the department is pinning on social media. On its face, this might seem a bit silly. But let’s look to Chicago, where this is absolutely an issue. You’ll see why the police department is taking it so seriously.
4. Background on goat yoga. I still don’t get it.
5. Texas Monthly first named the best barbecue in the world in 1973. It’s interesting reading the piece, seeing familiar names like Louie Mueller, Black’s, and Kreuz get special mentions. It took almost three decades for the magazine to do a larger list, but it settled into its current format in 1997. Here’s that piece. To note how far we’ve come, Sonny Bryan’s made the cut. Here’s their take in 2003, in 2008, and in 2013.
6. If you want more history about meat, here’s a link to Vaughn’s book, The Prophets of Smoked Meat.
7. Yes, WOF—Warmed Over Flavor—is real. That’s why your chicken and your pork tastes funky after days in the fridge. It’s interesting! Here’s a breakdown on why.
8. Pat Sharpe is Texas Monthly’s longtime food editor.
10. Here is Tim voicing his displeasure with the cover of Texas Monthly.
11. The News‘ food critic once dressed like a mummy during a meal. Seriously. She also once aped his legwork, years ago, in her own barbecue list.