I made the trip out to Taylor with my visiting in-laws for my first visit to Louis Mueller's BBQ yesterday. Based on everything I've read (here and elsewhere) I knew we were in for a quasi-religious BBQ experience. The incredible smell hit us well before we walked through the screen door. Inside, we ordered a pound of brisket, 4 sausages (3 reg. & 1 jalapeno), 2 beef ribs and a pint of potato salad (I know, I know, it's all about the meat, but there were some omnivores in the party). Watching them assemble our order, I couldn't wait to sit down and dig in. And then I tasted the brisket...
.and it was dry. Dry as a bone. Dry like the last cut of roast beef at the carving station of some overpriced brunch. I looked around at my companions and they all had the same look in their eyes: disappointment.
See, a week earlier we had gone to Kreuz Market (mine and my wife's third visit there, my in-laws' first) and all were impressed. At the end of the meal, my father-in-law (from Indiana) said, "Well, that raised my standards a few notches." We were expecting the same at Louis Mueller's.
So back to the food:
Brisket - As I said, way too dry. So dry that I know it must have been a bad batch. They can't regularly serve it like that and keep the reputation they have.
Sausages - Okay, but over-salty and over-greasy. They also don't have the coarser texture that I love about the sausages at Kreuz.
Beef ribs - Definitely the best of the meats we tried. Excellent smoky flavor. Juicy and fall-off-the-bone tender. Unfortunately, one of the ribs (the one my wife and I were sharing) was 75% fat, 25% meat so I didn't get to enjoy it as much of it as I would have liked.
Potato salad - I know I shouldn't be talking about the potato salad in a report on a legendary BBQ spot, but it was darn good. Maybe I liked it so much because I was looking for something to be impressed with after the the disappointment of the brisket. In any event, I liked it a lot. Good and egg-y the way I like it and my wife doesn't.
So my first visit to Louis Meuller's was a bust. Chowhounds, if you are fans of Louis Mueller's, let me know what you think. Was it just a bad day? Did I order the wrong things? I don't know. I want to believe it was an anomaly. I want to go back and have it be world-class. But I think I'm going to need some convincing; there are a bunch of other BBQ spots I've yet to try...
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