Texas Tuesdays, Part I: The Carnivore’s Dilemma


photo: Matthew Wexler

A light lunch at The County Line, one of Austin's famous barbecue restaurants. Photo: Matthew Wexler

I had one thing on my mind during my recent trip to Austin, Texas—and it wasn’t where to purchase a pair of Wranglers or how to two-step my way into the arms of a stranger (although those options presented themselves repeatedly).


How much and how many varieties could I eat? The answer: plenty. Let’s talk about a few of the best.

Where Do I Draw the Line?

When my companions ordered “The Cadillac” at the famous County Line Bar-B-Q, I knew I’d be in trouble. The family-size platters include sausage, chicken, marbled 2nd cut brisket, original lean brisket, beef ribs and pork ribs—along with homemade bread and side dishes. The pork ribs were my favorite: smoky and sweet and falling of the bone. Just like me by the end of the meal. When County Line old-timer Dee Dee (with a purple bow in her hair that rivaled one of those Fred Flintstone beef ribs and an equally impressive smile across her face) arrived with a wedge of bread pudding and bourbon sauce, I nearly rolled out of my chair and right into hill country. But I’m a savory kind of guy, so I left dessert to the ladies and was still dipping handfuls of brisket into the County Line’s signature hot & spicy sauce as the rest of the group waddled to the parking lot.

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