Rudy’s Bar-B-Q: An Authentic Texan Experience

by admin on September 24, 2009

in American Food

In my book, there is one food that, by its very nature, defines Texas: Barbecue. Think about it. There is a reason Hank Hill can make a pretty decent living selling propane even in a small town like Arlen. Everybody has a grill. Everybody uses it. And everybody loves red meat.

Rudy’s BarBQ in Tyler Texas is about as Texan as they come. The original Rudy’s Country Store was founded more than a hundred years ago near San Antonio. But it wasn’t until 1989 that the owners added Bar-B-Q to the outfit. Today, you can find Rudy’s all over the Southwest. What makes it so good? Two words: Slow burning. Rudy’s roasts its meats over an oak flame, which is said to burn even longer than mesquite. The results are irresistible.

When you walk in Rudy’s on the West Loop 323, you will hear country music, see lots of picnic tables, and smell the sweet aroma of grilled beef. You’ll order meat by the half-pound. The cashier will repeat your order to the big guy in the back, and he’ll cut it up fresh. (Get the brisket. Seriously.) He’ll give you your cut of meat on wax paper and throw in a loaf of white bread.

If brisket isn’t your thing, there’s also Turkey Breast, Pork Loins, Chopped Beef, Ribs, Chicken and Sausage (regular and jalapeno!) With these choices, you really can’t go wrong. Grab a side, too: Potato Salad, Corn Slaw, Beans… or even a Jumbo Smoked Potato! You’ll find a wide variety of specialty barbeque sauces to slather on your makeshift sandwich at the table. Be bold and try some different flavors, including the hot stuff.

If you can, try to make your Texas experience count with your beverage also. A glass of sweat tea, a Dr. Pepper, or a cold beer would all be in order.

Finally, eat slowly. Say hi to the good folks behind the counter. Make a joke about filling up your gas tank (Rudy’s sells gas, but it’s always expensive.) And when they say, “Y’all come back now,” go ahead and admit it. Because you will.

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