MMMM.. BRISKET..
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Brethren Road Trips The travel logs of our members. Q- joints, restaurants, entertainment, reviews while we travel around the 50 states. Also, Post here for a shout out to members to meet up with while on the road.


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Old 06-15-2019, 09:45 PM   #1
Rockinar
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Join Date: 07-19-13
Location: Houston, TX
Default Franklin BBQ Revisited

Its been about a year or so since I have been to Franklin. Franklin was one of the first "big name" places I went to and had nothing to judge it against. Since then I think I have been to all the Texas Monthly top 10 except Cattleback, plus most of the Houston places except Feges.

My opinion...

1) Brisket was way too salty. I don't remember this being the case the first time I visited. I saw Harry Soo, T-Roy and someone else mention the brisket was too salty. I agree. One of the slices I had was so salty I had to cut the bark off to eat it. I also remember it having some seasoning on it last time that seemed to be missing this time. I have been telling people this last year "Franklin is not just S&P". I would almost take that back. Whatever they are using now, it's minimal. S&P+??


2) Ribs. Good flavor, but too fall off the bone. Harry Soo and T-Roy also mentioned this, I agree. They could use some better pull, not sure why they chose borderline fall off the bone. Flavor and seasoning was fine. I remember last time I was there the ribs and brisket seemed to be sharing the same bold mystery seasoning. Like the brisket, it was missing from the ribs also. Whatever they put on the ribs as seasoning was minimal like the brisket, but the ribs were not overly salty.

3) Sausage. Sausage was good, I liked it. No real opinion either way. I'd would order again.

4) Turkey. Good. I think it could use slightly less pepper. But thats just my personal taste. Kinda wish they would not dunk it in the butter bath, but there's only so much they can do to make it exciting. So butter bath it is..

5) Potato Salad. It's a super classic mustard potato salad with a little bit of dill pickle in it. I have made the recipe in the Franklin BBQ book and I would say it's spot on to the restaurant. Only the restaurant version has less pepper and dill in it.

5) Key Lime Pie. I know Franklin buys these from some bakery, but they were awesome. I'm going to buy like 5 next time and toss them in the fridge. I could live on them for a week. It's a graham cracker crust with the tart lime filling.

My opinion, there's places that make better BBQ. Based on this one visit, I think Franklin would barely make it into my top 10. I remember the brisket last time being the super star. I was just not that impressed with it this time compared to others I have been to. It was super tender, but seemed to be lacking a bit in the smokey department and was overly salty. Like they wrap really early or something. I cant put my finger on it. Also in my experience brisket tends to dry out really quick after you slice. I sat there and ate my potato salad while looking at the brisket to see how long it takes to dry out compared to mine. It never did, and these were lean slices from the fatty end. I just don't know how you get lean slices that dont seem to get dry even when sitting outside in 85 degree heat and sitting out for 10 minutes. I guess I need experiment and practice more. I have attempted it with a couple Creekstone briskets and cant replicate it. So back to the drawing board.

But that said, I still had a great time and would still do it again next week if asked. The line is mostly tourists from out of state (probably because summer trips) that have never been so there's a lot to talk to them about and everyone is excited and theres good energy. I got there at 4AM to get first in line. I waited there 7 hours and still have no complaints about the line, and I don't like crowds or lines. Only complaint is if you get there at 4AM, theres no bathroom till 8AM. So plan for that if you chose this route. Theres places you can do a #1 at. But if you drink too much coffee and your stomach drops at 6, you're in trouble. Plan ahead.

I got there at 4AM. Another guy arrived about 5:30. A small group arrived about 6 and then at 7 the floodgates opened and nonstop cars were still arriving when I left at noon. Anyone going, I'd recommend you get there at 7. This should get you some sleep, you get all the food you want, you will be twords the front of the line and shaded from the sun. The people in the back of the line in the parking lot have to stand unless they brought a chair, get baked in the sun, and probably will stand there 2 hours and not get any food in the end. YES, THAT would suck. 4:30 AM gets you your choice of parking, best people watching, first to eat, first to leave and go do other things. They told me that might not be early enough on weekends. I was told kids come straight from the bars at 2, and sit in front sometimes on weekends.

Also I stole the previous day's "Sold Out" sign off the front door. If someone wants it as a souvenir for the man cave or pit patio as wall art or whatever, send me a message with your address and I'll mail it to you along with a surprise mystery gift from Franklin BBQ. Id like to give the sign and gift to someone from out of state that does not have the opportunity to get to Franklin, but wants to.

EDIT: Sign has been claimed.














Last edited by Rockinar; 06-15-2019 at 11:16 PM..
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Old 06-15-2019, 09:59 PM   #2
highergr0und
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Great story! Would love that sign...
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Old 06-15-2019, 10:04 PM   #3
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Did you mention the oversalted meat to anyone there? Just curious how their CS is
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Old 06-15-2019, 10:10 PM   #4
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Great write-up. Thanks for taking the time.
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Old 06-15-2019, 10:25 PM   #5
gtr
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Thanks for the reportage!

I've been there a couple times myself. Last time, we landed about noon & it was the week after New Year, so I figured things might be a little slow so my son and I slid over there and it was about a 1.5 wait. I like the brisket, beans, and sausage the best there. Brisket was spot on both times and I swear my son about swallowed his whole. He loves him some beef and he was a happy dude.

And yeah, the line is fine if you know what you're getting into. The first time, I was catching up with my little sis & met Gore, so we had an awesome time. If you're with good folks, or meet some, the line is not a problem at all - it's actually pretty fun.

Gotta give a shout out to the meat cutter - the one working the last time I was there was a highly skilled individual. Precise, clean, fast, calm - an amazing thing to watch.

As to being consistent - while I've had 2 good meals there, I'm not completely surprised there'd be some variance. It sure does vary at the Lockhart spots - you can have the most amazing food ever, or meat that's kinda dry and salty.

Great pix!
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Old 06-15-2019, 11:11 PM   #6
Rockinar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by highergr0und View Post
Did you mention the oversalted meat to anyone there? Just curious how their CS is

Nah, I did not mention it. Probably should have. I did not want to be a wet blanket and start complaining. It was all good. I had a good time and would still go back.
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Old 06-19-2019, 10:47 PM   #7
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Thank you for the review. I have not been there but will try it when the lines subceed.Like,walk in ,sit down and order.Good review though.
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Old 06-20-2019, 07:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
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Thank you for the review. I have not been there but will try it when the lines subceed.Like,walk in ,sit down and order.Good review though.
That's kinda where I stand on the matter. I'm not willing to wait in line for hours to eat anywhere.
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Old 06-21-2019, 10:40 AM   #9
Dustin Dorsey
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I haven't been since 2015, but it was great then. I went on a saturday when they had the beef ribs and that overshadowed the brisket a little for me. It wasn't too salty that day. I think they've changed how they do the pork ribs since I went last but they were fantastic at that time.

I know Cattleack is hard to get to being open only 2 days a week but you gotta check that place out. They are cooking Akuashi beef and it's excellent. Their sausage really blew me away as well.
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Old 06-21-2019, 01:35 PM   #10
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Thank you for the pictures and the reviews. I bought both his books this year and learned a bunch about brisket. I learned less from his steak book because I don't think we see eye to eye on a number of his steak ideas. But, for his restaurant and brisket and such, he's got it going on. Someday I might make the trek. Dunno. I'm not big on lines.



There was a comment about going after the lines subsided someday. As far as I know, from the day he opened after receiving a great food critic review, the lines have been non-stop. That was years ago. With his reputation now all over creation, I don't know they will be getting any shorter anytime soon.


Most folks in the restaurant business would love a problem like that.
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Old 06-21-2019, 08:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bucknekked View Post
Someday I might make the trek. Dunno. I'm not big on lines.
Order at least five lbs of meat and you can skip the line.

https://preorder.franklinbbq.com/
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Old 06-22-2019, 05:59 AM   #12
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Those prices are freaking absurd. At $25/lb, I'd rather eat king crab.
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Old 06-22-2019, 08:10 PM   #13
Rockinar
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Those prices are freaking absurd. At $25/lb, I'd rather eat king crab.
They are just a little over average for good BBQ. Not a big deal.
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