720 N. Texas, Bryan
This is one of the bbq joints listed in the new TX Monthly 50 Best list receiving a 4.5 score out of 5. Their sign proclaims they are one of the Top 10 BBQ Joints in the state but actually there are 13 places listed by TM that received at least a 4.5 score. Daniel Vaughn, who is now the TM BBQ Editor, gave it 6 stars a year and a half ago on his Full Custom Gospel BBQ Blog, one of only 4 places to receive that many stars. None of the places in the Houston area received better than a 4.25 score in TM, nor did a couple of my long time favorites, Black’s in Lockhart and City Market in Luling, so I wanted to try it out.
It’s easy to find, right at the intersection of N. Texas Ave, Texas Hwy 6 Business through downtown Bryan, and MLK Blvd. It’s just a few blocks north of the Brazos Co. Courthouse. Most of the reviews online emphasize it’s to go only but they have recently moved and now have a small dining room that can accommodate perhaps 2 dozen people on 2 tops and 4 tops. The meats are on display in a meat case and service is very friendly and quick.
I was there during the lunch hour and I think I wasn’t the only one making my first visit as there seemed to be several people who weren’t familiar with the menu. I got a simple 2 meat/1 side plate. I asked for mixed fatty brisket and lean brisket with sausage and got what you see below. Listed as ½ pound of meat I probably got 10 to 11 ozs. The brisket is sliced a bit thicker here than most places, perhaps, and I was disappointed in how little bark there was. There wasn’t much smoke ring nor a lot of smoke flavor but there was enough and the meat was very moist and tender. The sausage, just mildly peppery, had a little snap to the casing and was exceptionally smoothly textured.
The sauce, served on the side, was totally unnecessary. I couldn’t tell if the potato salad was an institutional or home-made product but it was okay.
This was not as good as I remember what I’ve had in the past at Black’s and Luling but it’s been several years since I was really into the Texas bbq scene. Anyway, it’s certainly worth stopping in if you’re in the area or passing through, or even a special trip up from Houston. They’re closed Sunday and Monday.
Here's the more glowing review from FCGB: