Dallas BBQ: Pecan Lodge V. Lockhart Smokehouse

Besides hanging out with Uncle Mike all weekend I knew when we booked our trip to Dallas there was one thing I wanted to make sure we got ... some awesome Texas barbecue. When I was looking into all the things to do in Dallas I searched long and hard, looked at websites, asked advice from friends, family and bloggers on what they considered the best 'cue in Dallas. In the end there were two stand out choices from all this research. Pecan Lodge in the Deep Ellum neighborhood and Lockhart Smokehouse southwest of downtown in the Bishop Arts District. We kicked off our trip with our first Texas meal at Pecan Lodge.  

While we waited in line outside Uncle Mike was telling us how he'd never been but had heard great things. We were pretty amazed that he had never been but I guess when your wait for lunch on a Thursday is 45 minutes not only is that tough on a work day but means the food is fantastic. Yes we waited 45 minutes for food! Let me tell you it was very much worth it.

I ended up getting the brisket and pulled pork since they were unfortunately out of ribs by the time we got up to place our orders. The brisket was so stinking tender it was ridiculous how easy it fell apart. No fork or knife needed. The pork was just as tender and juicy although I think next time I'd prefer it in sandwich form.

Kevin of course went for the craziest item on the menu ... the Hot Mess. A jumbo sea salt-crusted sweet potato, South Texas barbacoa (shredded brisket with southwestern seasoning), chipotle cream, cheese, butter & green onions. I got a taste and actually it was really good, I'd probably get another time as well. The sweet of the potato really paired well with the kick of the barbacoa. Kevin even tried fried okra for the first time and loved it. We did decide that anything fried has to be good though.

On the 4th we spent the late morning and lunch time in the Bishop Arts District at my second pick for barbecue, Lockhart Smokehouse. Surprisingly it wasn't crazy busy but it seemed that a lot of people were getting their lunches to go and take them home for their 4th celebrations.

I love being able to see the brisket and everything getting pulled out of the smokers and chopped up for us right before your eyes. At Lockhart you could do as little or as much as you wanted since it was done by weight. That was heaven for me since we all know I always like to try a little bit of everything.

We ended up getting a couple of sausages (hot and mild), brisket, chicken and I got a rib plus some amazing sides, deviled eggs, mac & cheese and baked beans. As you can tell by our wrapped up pile just below it was a good amount of food. They wrap up everything in butcher paper, you just unwrap it and dig in. If you couldn't tell by the last photo below we really enjoyed it. The mac and cheese was insane it was so good, it was rich and creamy and just melt in your mouth delectable. I thought the chicken was the best of all the meat (sacrilege right?), the white meat I had was tender and juicy. Pretty sure I didn't let anyone else get much.

The Verdict

After much discussion we decided that both places had some amazing barbecue. There were certain items we liked more at each place. Uncle Mike and I decided we enjoyed the brisket more at Pecan Lodge since the cuts we got were much leaner and we didn't realize we could get a leaner cut at Lockhart. I loved the rib at Lockhart and it totally stood on it's own no sauce needed. The mac and cheese at Lockhart topped the Pecan Lodge's for sure but the Pecan Lodge's sweeter bbq sauce won for me over the more vinegary one at Lockhart. So when in doubt go to both and enjoy it all because really no matter what it was all scrumptious!!

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