Monday, June 22, 2015

Southside Market & Barbeque (Bastrop)

My favorite BBQ joint in Elgin is Southside Market & Barbeque. Their brisket, baby back ribs, and sausage are worth the stop. They opened a second location in Bastrop last fall. I have not had a chance to stop in. We normally go to Houston on 183 instead of 71 through Bastrop so we never pass by. The Bastrop location is only 25 miles from my office so it is not that far. I have to work some Saturdays and wanted some good barbecue for lunch this day. Southside Market it was.

The menu at the Bastrop location resembled the one in Elgin. I ordered moist brisket, pork spareribs, and the original sausage. I wish there was a Texas trinity combo plate though. It would have been a better value than ordering by the weight. I also added some baby back ribs and sausage slammers. When I order moist brisket, I expect slices from the point or slices where the point is attached to the flat. Sometimes I end up getting slices from the flat under the point. That is not really fatty/moist brisket. That is what I got here. The brisket had a nice smoke to it and was tender. The flavor was good, but the fat was overly rendered so the slices were on the drier side. The spareribs were fine. The smoke was on-point, but the meat was a little chewy and dry for my taste. Southside Market makes their all-beef sausage in Elgin but smoke them in Bastrop. The sausage was great. It had a nice grit and snappy casing with a good amount of fat. The baby back ribs were juicy and had an excellent smokiness to it. They were quite tasty. The star of the meal was the sausage slammer. It is composed of jalapeño and cheese inside of breakfast pan sausage with bacon wrapped around the outside and then smoked. Wow. The bites were delectable, but I had to stop myself from eating all three of them.

I think the sausage slammers might be worth the trip alone to Southside Market. Everything else is gravy. It is unless than 30 minutes away from me for lunch so I can swing by every once in a while when I have time to take a long lunch. I want to explore the other parts of the menu like the baked potato, jalapeño cheese sausage, beef ribs, chicken and pork steak. I will be back. Grade: B-

Until next time, happy smoking...

Address: 534 Hwy 71 W, Bastrop, TX 78602
Phone: (512) 575-9037

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Ironwood Barbecue (Closed)

National Brisket Day is celebrated on May 28th. I technically celebrate it every day, but I am not going to pass on a chance to eat brisket (like I need a reason). Blue OX BBQ occupied space with The Buzz Mill for a few years. They have now moved (location pending), and Ironwood Barbecue has taken its place. The climate has been wet in Austin so eating at food trailers has not been easy. Because Ironwood shares common space with The Buzz Mill, there is a covered patio to avoid the elements. It was pouring rain when I got there, but the weather cleared up after I finished my meal.

I ordered the sampler plate with moist brisket and spareribs with sides of creamy coleslaw and roasted green chili mac and cheese. I also added a little bit of the Dublin country ribs. Beer can chicken was the only other meat on the menu. The brisket was tender and smoky and not bad at all. They could have done a better job trimming and cutting the meat. A well-trimmed brisket results in a better product. The slice I received varied between a half inch thick and an inch thick. The flavor was underwhelming and could have used a little bit more rub. The pork ribs were falling off the bone but had an off-putting sour taste. It only had a trace of smoke, and without the pink in meat, I would have guessed it was cooked in an oven. The Dublin country ribs were unique and different. It is not a true rib with a bone, but sliced pork shoulder that is rubbed and covered in a Dr. Pepper sauce. It was dry and chewy but was also tasty, saucy, and sweet. I did not finish the bland coleslaw. The macaroni and cheese disappeared rather quickly though.

Blue OX BBQ was a solid stop for barbecue. I feel like The Buzz Mill downgraded when they switched to Ironwood Barbecue. Maybe Ironwood is early in its existence and has not hit its groove. Or it could just be another forgettable joint among the many heavy hitters in Austin. Grade: Other

Until next time, happy smoking...