Friday, June 12, 2015

Black's BBQ Review (@Austin, TX location)

Note: Many years ago a large group of us did a BBQ tour visiting Lockhart and Luling, and Black's in Lockhart was one of the places we tried. Our memory (admittedly this is at least 5 years ago) of the place was decent, but not anything we'd make a trip for.  For the Lockhart location, one of
the strongest selling points would have been sides. That is, you get better BBQ at other locations, but you might get a better overall meal at Black's. (This is our memory anyway).
(Al's comment: Having been on that trip, I think I probably remember their sausage most fondly.)

Having never been here before, Tish and I stopped at the Austin location to pick up some BBQ to take home for lunch. I left my phone in the car, so no pictures from the location. Food appears to be kept on a warming pit behind the counter, and pits are elsewhere on premise.

They have no plate specials, so everything is strictly "by the pound". We order 4 pork ribs, 1 pound each brisket and turkey, and 2 sausage links (links contain wheat and gluten so they are for me only).
Pork Rib: This is disappointing. The one I get doesn't have much flavor besides pork, and has almost no crust. I'm tasting no real smoke or spice on mine. Tish's has a little more crust and a little more smoke flavor. Mine is very chewy in places. 4.0/10 (Tish gives her a 6.0/10).

Sausage: Not a lot of snap in the case. It has a coarser grind than many others. Flavor is decent, but not outstanding. Definitely a "take it or leave it".  5.5/10.  

Brisket: Again, nothing really stands out here. Some smoke flavor, but not a lot, and not a lot else going on. Bark is OK but not great. 6.0/10 (Tish concurs).

Turkey: Has a good smoke flavor, but a little salty. It's also just a little on the chewy side. I've had better, but I've certainly had much worse. 7.0/10 (Tish concurs on score, although hers was a little more tender).  

In short, this is no different than many other BBQ places in Austin (or Texas). There's nothing really horrible here, but nothing really outstanding.  

Is it worth visiting? If you're in the area and decide you want BBQ, sure. They offer family packs, and I can see them being a popular place for people working in the area.  

Is it worth a trip? Absolutely not. If you've traveled an hour for BBQ, there are plenty of other places in the area worth spending your time on. This is not one of them.
The Austin location can be found here. In case you want to know our FAQ's for review.