by Gregory Moore
DALLAS – Been a while since I’ve blogged but I decided to write about a new BBQ place that has hit the Dallas metroplex.
Lockhart Smokehouse (www.lockhartsmokehouse.com) is the latest BBQ joint to hit Dallas and there are some promising trends and some not so ‘traditional’ decisions that will either make or break this new restaurant.
First things first, I truly like the location. Located off of Bishop Ave. in Oakcliff, you cannot miss the eatery. Even while I trekked five miles in the snow yesterday, it was easy to find and now I don’t need navigation to get there.
Now what caught my eye wasn’t the place to order the cue; it was the fact that there is a bar in a barbecue restaurant.
Yes you read that correctly; a bar.
Now in Central Texas where my peeps are from, that may not fly (or would it) but I have to remember, this is Dallas and things are done a little bit differently up here.
And so as I walked past the flat screen TVs and nice sitting areas (much nicer than in the Luling/Lockhart/Gonzales places I know) I headed straight to the back where the food is made and ordered.
Here’s where I think things get interesting.
I don’t smell smoke and my clothes don’t reek of it.
They have a nice red Berkley smoker. They have a nice counter with a fancy computer thingamajig to rake cash or plastic. And I saw people getting orders and leaving or sitting down.
But if there is one thing you can judge barbecue meats on; it’s how long the line is to the counter and that’s not the five people who couldn’t make up their mind when I got in there.
So with that in mind, I ordered what I consider my usual order at Kruez, Luling or even Smitty’s: six rings and half a pound of brisket.
Here is the first turn off for me: $40.
Yes that was my total cost.
Rings are $5 a piece folks; that is 135% more than what is charged in Lockhart.
Now maybe they have to have the sausage shipped every day; I don’t know.
If they do, then there is trouble brewing because not even Jerry Jones would pay those prices for long.
My second turn off?
Not enough smoke.
Let me say this: the product is pretty good.
Is it on the caliber of the original Kruez/Smitty’s product in Lockhart?
And that’s where the smoke comes in.
The Berkley smoker may be fancy and new but it is not like the brick pits that are used in the small towns along the Texas BBQ circuit.
Now for those who have never really had Central Texas BBQ, this place is going to rock.
But I’m a purist and while I will patronize it because it is a few miles from the house, I don’t think it will be on my favorite BBQ places of all times.
Like I said before, the product is good but it is missing that ‘seasoning’ that only years of being in business give such products.
(For the record, yes I think they are better than Dickey’s and will probably give Sonny Bryan’s a run. They definitely can give Rudy’s trouble)
In the end, it’s a restaurant that I will frequent, invite friends to, etc.
However if I want the real thing and really want to make the drive, I can gas up the SUV, point it down I-35 south and make a stop at Kruez in Lockhart.
So on my unofficial scale of great BBQ taste, I’ll say it is a 7.3 and needs some seasoning.