There's still time to make summer foodie pilgrimages, and a new list directs you to the increasingly popular category of barbecue. Southern Living magazine, which has a tradition of issuing such lists, just released its 50 best barbecue restaurants, featuring one in every state, and that includes Texas.
"There's no doubt barbecue is a national obsession, especially in the summertime," the magazine says. "From ribs and brisket to okra and macaroni and cheese, barbecue is more than a cuisine — it’s a lifestyle."
"Want to know where to go when you're on a family vacation to the East Coast?" they ask. "Or where to stop on a fun summer road trip to the Midwest? How about where to find the most unique barbecue roadside attractions in America? Wherever your travels may take you, this list has you covered."
The restaurants are done by state and helpfully arranged in alphabetical order. Does Idaho really have a noteworthy barbecue place? The list says yes: Cutter's Grand BBQ, noted for its tacos and baby back ribs. In Massachusetts, it's Sweet Cheeks, a restaurant from ex-Texan Top Chef contestant Tiffani Faison.
The choice for Texas is a surprise: From all of the many barbecue restaurants across the state, the magazine singles out Ten50 BBQ, the Central Texas-style barbecue joint at the corner of U.S. 75 and Arapaho Road in Richardson.
What? No genuflection to BBQ god Aaron Franklin? No doffing of the cap to Tootsie Tomanetz at Snow's?
Nope. It's kind of refreshing, actually.
The author is Perri Ormont Blumberg, a veteran list-maker whose previous efforts include "10 New Snacks to Beat Afternoon Energy Slumps" and "7 Ways to Stimulate Erogenous Zones You Didn't Know You Had."
For the Texas entry, she writes: "Right outside Big D in Richardson, you’ll discover meat thoughtfully cooked over hickory, oak, pecan, and mesquite for 12 to 16 hours. (The pitmasters work 24 hours a day.) Order a Torpedo (bacon-wrapped jalapeños with chicken or brisket), or if you're a purist, pick your favorites off of their smoked meats menu and order by the half-pound."