Review of BBQ 512 (Austin, TX)
Scott and I decided to stop there for lunch today after running an errand. This place used to be Chisholm Trail Icehouse and BBQ. It’s typical counter-line service. We each order a three-meat plate. Scott gets brisket, pork ribs, and venison sausage. I get turkey, pork loin, and regular sausage. We will be sharing.
Pork Loin: Somewhat tough and very dry. Almost smoke flavor. The sauce doesn’t really help it al all, and there’s no real flavor from the rub. I have an end piece and can’t taste anything but pork flavor. Scores: Tom: 3/10, Scott: 4/10.
Turkey: Hard to see in the picture, but there’s a whitish/yellowish substance on the turkey (was covering the turkey when they brought it in). Turns out it is apparently butter (that’s what it tastes like anyway). The turkey has a decent smoke flavor and is reasonably tender. Not sure why the butter is there, and there’s enough clinging to the outside that it actually gets in the way. Both of us score it 6.5/10.
(Note: Would have been higher if there hadn’t been so much butter on it.)
Regular Sausage: Decent snap in the casing, and it is tender and juicy. It has a decent flavor with some spice. Both of us score it a 7/10.
Pork Ribs: Mine is tough and like the pork loin doesn’t have much rub flavor. While there is a smoke flavor, it’s actually more of a burnt flavor than a smoke flavor. It’s also a little on the dry side. Scott likes his a little better. Scores: Tom: 3/10; Scott: 5/10.
Brisket: First thing we notice is that the bark has been cut off. There’s not a lot of smoke flavor, and rub flavor is minimal because the bark is gone. It is tender and reasonably moist. Scores: Tom: 5/10, Scott: 5.5/10.
Venison Sausage: Again, decent snap in the casing, and it is tender and juicy. It also has a good flavor (if a little more gamey). The spice starts softer than the original but finishes stronger. Both of us score it a 7/10.
Like many places, BBQ 512 has some things it does well and some things that need work. I’d recommend leaving the bark on the brisket for starters.
Is it worth a visit? It’s a decent place for a lunch. I’d stick with the sausage or the turkey.
Is it worth a trip? Nope. While the sausage was on the upper side of good, nothing was on the exceptional side.