Saturday, March 8, 2014

My review of Franklin BBQ - Rated #1 in Texas

Franklin Barbecue (900 E. 11th Street, Austin, Texas 78702) is quickly becoming a legend. That's not an easy task for a newby BBQ place located deep in the heart of Texas. It caught my eye after landing the number one spot on Texas Monthly's best BBQ places. Being that I am a foodie I decided to stop by and see how it compared to the BBQ goliaths down in Lockhart.

I heard you have to get there early and wait in line because they sell out and close before 2:00pm. How early? It was a Sunday and I got there about 9:00am (They open at 11:00am). When I arrived there was already a long line of 30+ people waiting.

An employee came out and took everyone's preorder. Because of my spot in line she said it would be about 12:30pm before I got inside to order, 3-1/2 hours away. That meant this was by far the longest I had ever waited to eat anywhere. If this place didn't have this amazing hype I would have left, but I'm glad I stayed.

While I was in line I got to thinking about how good Black's in Lockhart was. There was probably a 10 minute wait there. Could this place really be that much better to warrant a 3-1/2 hour wait?

There was a guy there renting out chairs for $5 so I got one. It was 90 degrees outside in the Texas heat and I was exhausted from the night before. He said he makes $200-$300 cash everyday just renting chairs. That's $100k a year for three hours work everyday. Franklin BBQ has unknowingly created a whole little sub-economy of renting chairs.

Finally I had made it inside. Franklin's is in a small building. Barely enough places for just a few people to eat. I made it to the counter and ordered brisket, sausage, potato salad, and beans. This is the same combo I ordered at all the Lockhart places.

Then I sat down to see if the 3-1/2 hours I just spent in the Texas heat was worth it....

It was worth it. I would wait 3-1/2 hours again. This was one of the best meals of my life. We are talking life changing BBQ here. Other BBQ will never be the same afterwards. BBQ will be a holy word after you eat here.

Their brisket was by far the best I've ever had. The sausage was tied with Kreuz (which is the best sausage I've had). The sides were spectacular. The beans had chopped BBQ in them and were amazing. The attention to detail in the food is like no other I have ever seen.

Franklin is better than the BBQ kings in Lockhart (Kreuz, Smitty's, Black's, Chisholm). I have seen the light. My life is forever changed from a 3-1/2 hour wait.

So what are you waiting for? Get down there and get in line...