Posts Tagged ‘Smitty’s Market’

From hogs roasting in back yards to roadside, mobile smokers, BBQ is a central Texas specialty. But with only one day in this roast meat heartland, I needed to taste what Gourmet magazine ranks one of the best joints…even if it wasn’t necessarily street food.Smitty's Meat Market

Entering Smitty’s Market on a 98-degree day is like visiting hell on the way to heaven, and the ultimate reward surpasses any promised paradise. A line weaves from the door through the smoke room where open fires are constantly stoked, ensuring an endless supply of cooked meats for the waiting customers. Smitty's Smoke Room

The menu is simple: Cold Sausage, Hot Sausage, Lean Beef (Shoulder), Fat Beef (Brisket), Pork Chops, Prime Rib, Pork Ribs. You can order by slice, rib or pound and your meat is wrapped in thick butcher paper with Butter Krust sliced white bread thrown on top.

Smitty's Condiment Bar

Clutching our paper-wrapped meat, we made our way into the blissfully air-conditioned dining room, where large communal tables were packed with diners devouring their sandwiches. As you enter this second room, there is a counter of condiments where you can buy homemade pickles and peppers, cheeses and avocados, and a selection of side dishes from a tangy, sharp slaw to meaty, but bland, baked beans. This is where the local regulars turn their orders into handcrafted, customized sandwiches.

Smitty's Meat

We ordered two ribs, ½ a pound of fat beef, and two hot sausages and started with the ribs. They were some of the best I’ve ever had: smoky, slightly sweet and caramelized on the outside but meaty with no cloying BBQ sauce to intrude on the flavor of well-seasoned pork.

The sausage, wrapped in a slice of Butter Krust was rich, juicy and spicy with a satisfyingly taught skin. Topped with the homemade, not-so-hot hot sauce (found on the table) I fell in love with the unadulterated flavors of slow cooked, smoky meat.

The brisket was good but not near the top of my list…it was tougher than I expected with less flavor that the other meats we ordered. The fat beef was good but it needed a compliment—when I looked round at the other tables I understood the beauty of the condiment bar. Clearly we were the out-of-towners—the tattooed bikers sitting next to us were attacking their stacked sandwiches of meat, cheese, avocado, pickles and hot sauce.

Were I to return, I’d probably spend more time at the condiment counter trying the myriad sandwich variations, but with just one meal to enjoy I wanted to eat my smoke-infused meat without any distraction…except of course for my two-dollar Lone Star beer.


Smitty’s Market

208 South Commerce
Lockhart, Texas 78644

Telephone: 512-398-9344

Mon-Fri 7am – 6pm
Sat 7am – 6:30pm
Sun 9am – 3pm

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