Aaaand we move onto Austin, Texas- the land of awesome barbecue! You see this photo? It was taken at 8.30am and Franklin Barbecue (900 E 11th St, Austin) opens at 11am. You see, Helen and Lex are nuts. Barbecue nuts. And we’d been told that Franklin Barbecue was the best in Austin and so, we drove halfway across town to be among the first in the line.
This is the queue not long after 9am.
Aaand this is the queue at 11am. Oh and did I mention the 30C heat?
Luckily this enterprising chap was renting out deck chairs for $5 a pop which came complete with a sun umbrella tho the majority of the locals had brought their own chairs and eskys filled with beer.
Several episodes of Gilmore Girls later and we had finally reached the promised land! We’d been asked earlier in the day what we were going to order so that they could estimate when they would run and cut the line. We may have over ordered due to grumbling stomaches haha that there is 2lb of Brisket (US$32), 2.3lb Ribs (US$32.20), 1/4lb Turkey (US$3.25), 1/4lb Pork (US$3.25), 1 Sausage link (US$2), side of Pinto Beans (US$1.35), side of Slaw (US$1.35) and side of Potato Salad (US$1.35). The onions, pickles and jalapenos were free in the condiments station.
Texas Brisket. OH EM GEE. Time stood still after the first bite of that brisket. It was so juicy with just the right amount of charcoaly caramelised edges and tender with beautiful ribbons of fat I just have no words for how glorious it was. If I were to have a last supper that brisket would be it.
Then there were the ribs which just fell off the bone by staring at it. No seriously, it was ridiculous.
We may have ordered one of each of tarts for dessert. You know, for research purposes 😛 Don’t worry we ended up taking them home to eat later after our meat coma! On offer that day was the Bourbon Banana Pie, Pecan Pie, Key Lime Pie and the Lemon Chess Pie all US$4 each. I particularly loved the Pecan Pie with its buttery biscuit base and sweet brown sugar filling hiding under the pecans. The Key Lime Pie had the perfect sourness to sweet ratio as did the Lemon Chess Pie but the Bourbon Banana Pie was not my fave of the bunch not because of the flavour but more for the texture, it tasted gelatine-y and not as smooth as the other pies.
Tee hee it’s the Hi How Are You Jeremiah the Frog! I had to visit it thanks to my obsession with the movie Whip It haha
[Image from Helen] After eating at Franklin Barbecue we didn’t think it could be topped because really how do you top deliciousness? But word on the street was that John Lewis, the dude who perfected the recipe at Franklin Barbecue had his own place called La Barbecue (1502 South 1st St, Austin) and that it was a billion times better. AND HOLY MOTHER OF GOD IT TOTALLY WAS!!! A BILLION TIMES INFINITY!!! Insert all the superlatives and expletives of all the languages in the verse because the Sliced Brisket Sandwich (US$7.99) was fan-freaking AHMAZING. Sure it may look like it’s sitting in a puddle of oil but it’s damn tasty oil haha it was freaky how soft that brisket was and the ratio of creamy fat to meat oh boy I still have dreams… The highlight of the entire trip was that brisket!
Clutching our stomaches we trudged back to the comfort of air con in our car only to round the corner and unexpectedly see a shiny silver trailer in a car park with the slogan of BIG. FAT. DONUTS. And well, how can you not stop when you see that?! Gourdough’s (1503 S 1st St, Austin) just brings a smile to my face when I remember that day. Best donut of the trip!
The Flying Pig (US$5.50). JUST LOOK AT THAT BEAUTY!!! BASK IN ITS FABULOUSNESS!!! A piping hot, fresh from the fryer fluffy donut, topped with uber crispy bacon and drizzled with maple syrup icing. BEST DONUT EVER. If you’re ever in Austin get your butt down to Gourdough’s!
I may have also ordered the Mother Clucker (US$5.50) just to say its name and to see this concoction with my own eyes. The donut did not disappoint with its hot fluffy innards however the fried chicken strips were a bit dry tho we did our best dunking the strips in the accompanying tub of honey butter. Because we totally needed to ingest more calories after the heavy barbecue (not).
Lex ordered the raspberry popsicle tea for lols but it turned out to pretty tasty and refreshing in the crazy heat.
Food coma time! I’ve been asked what exactly did we do when we weren’t eating and well you’re looking at it haha lots of food coma naps 😛
Austin is home to many a food truck and some have put down roots like Biscuits & Groovy (5015 Duval St, Austin). The Johnny Hash (US$8) is a pretty much a party in a plate- buttery biscuits (like savoury Aussie scones) and smothered in pepper gravy with cheese, sausage, crispy bacon bits, potatoes and chives. Rich and comforting and would be freaking awesome in a uh colder climate heh
And then there was our very first trip to Whole Foods. Helen had wanted to reenact the Top Chefs running for their trolleys and hooning it down the aisles but resisted. Man Whole Foods is magical, the place is so freaking big and the ready to eat section was incredible! No day old soggy sandwiches and greasy meat pies no siree everything was super fresh from the the soups station to the meats. There was so much variety even at the salad station where it wasn’t just your boring 3 types of lettuce, carrot and cucumber but all the colours of the vegetable rainbow! The desserts section was of course my favourite place to stare at with the perfectly iced cakes, portion controlled parfaits, selection of freshly baked cookies and of course my favourite section the cheese. Ah the cheese! What I wouldn’t give to plonk myself right there and eat you all! Ah Austin you were a blast, I can’t wait to come back!