LeRoy & Lewis Barbecue
This review has been in the making for a long time. Over a year now actually. LeRoy & Lewis Barbecue has been serving up BBQ for that long, and I was there on day one. LeRoy you say? Yes, it is the same Evan LeRoy formerly of Freedmen's Bar. He partnered with Sawyer Lewis who has managed Houston's Coltivare and Austin's Contigo. With all of her front of house experience, Sawyer and Evan make a wonderful duo. Located in the food truck park next to Cosmic Coffee + Beer Garden, #NewSchoolBBQ is served with a side of great customer service. You can also eat your Q in air conditioning at Cosmic.
|Bagel with brisket schmear|
|Beef cheeks, barbacoa, pork shoulder, hot wings, cheesy squash, and potato salad|
|Brisket, Szechuan beef rib, and porchetta|
|Mac and cheese stuffed quail, beef cheeks, pork belly burnt ends, duck, barbacoa, BBQ fried rice, and kale Caesar salad|
|Baby backs, pork belly burnt ends, fried rice boudin, and Sambal cucumbers|
|Spicy Barbacado - barbacoa stuffed avocado during Heat Week. It is less spicy the rest of the time.|
|Whole hog, marinated tomatoes, and Sambal cucumbers|
|Banana pudding ice cream sandwich with vanilla wafer cookies|
You can eat at LeRoy & Lewis for every meal. Start the day with a Rosen's bagel at Cosmic, and the schmear options are from L&L. Brisket schmear? Yup. Next level stuff there. Whatever is not sold for lunch service will be available for dinner. The star of that show is the smoked burger. The patties are formed from brisket trimmings and smoked. Before they are served, they get blasted in the firebox on a cast iron. The seared patties get a slice of American cheese, topped with onions grilled in the burger drippings, aioli, and pickles, and placed between a potato bun. So freaking good. It is one of the best in town. That would be a fantastic day of eating.
Let's talk about the lunch menu. It is not going to look like most of your traditional Texas BBQ menu. Good news? The brisket might be my favorite in town. Bad news? It is only available on Saturdays. That peppery crust is a thing of beauty. What you can expect to find most days of the week is beef cheeks. It is so good that I will forget about the brisket while I am eating it. The meat is really tender, smoky, and lots of pepper, just the way I like it. Because the menu is constantly changing, I rarely get the same order.
When I stopped in for brisket, Szechuan beef rib, and porchetta one day, it was probably the best meal I had this year (2018). Everything was cooked really well and packed a ton of flavor. While I enjoy pretty much all of the proteins offered here, the mac and cheese stuffed quail did not blow me away. I do not think the combination of texture works well together here. When it was Evan's birthday, the crew smoked a whole hog. It made me excited for our upcoming Carolina tour. If you are around during Heat Week, participate in it. Challenge your taste buds and digestive system. A lot of fun fiery dishes will be served. There are plate lunches now so you get more value for your dollar.
Do not forget about the sides. It is a great way to get your veggies in. The cheesy squash, marinated tomatoes, and Sambal cucumbers have been some of my favorites. I hate kale. I try to eat it to be "healthy." The kale Caesar salad however offered by LeRoy & Lewis is a work of a genius. It is refreshing, balanced, and has a good crunch. If you see fried rice on the menu, order it. It eats like a meal and is really comforting. One time I got a banana pudding/bread pudding hybrid for dessert. The idea sounds great, but the execution fell short in my opinion. It might be that I like my bread pudding to be warmer and more fluid. They made up for it with the banana pudding ice cream sandwich with vanilla wafer cookies. It tasted like you were eating banana pudding between your finger. Satisfying.
What is next for LeRoy & Lewis? Evan and Sawyer are looking for a brick and mortar location. There has been no timetable set yet. I know they want more space to work with. Once they have that, Sawyer's husband, Nathan, will get involved and head up the brewery part of the business. Until then, keep eating at one of the great BBQ joints Austin has to offer. Do go in with an open mind though. LeRoy & Lewis is redefining Texas barbecue, and it is working. It does not have to be just the Texas Trinity anymore. Someone who is smoking Texas BBQ in California refuses to go to L&L because they do not serve traditional Texas BBQ. Idiot. He does not what he is missing out on. Grade: A
Until next time, happy smoking...
Address: 121 Pickle Rd, Austin, TX 78704
Phone: (512) 945.9882