How late is too late to get to Snow BBQ?
I want to go to Snow but as my friend put it, "I'm terrified of driving an hour there and finding out that they've run out of brisket, but at the same time, the idea of eating brisket right after I've woken up is unappealing."
Personally, the idea of eating brisket right when I wake up or even being roused from sleep by brisket is highly appealing. Eating it at midnight before bed is appealing. Learning to sleepwalk, just so that I can enjoy it in the middle of the night also sounds pretty awesome.
However, can any Snow eaters (or people who made the drive too late) let me know *just* how quickly they sell out of BBQ?
I'm going to get the responses, average them, and disaggregate the data based on driving conditions, season, age, gender, race and political orientation, then share the results of my quantitative study with everyone.
Thanks in advance,
I've been twice - the first time we got there at 10:20, stood on a short line, and they had plenty of brisket - people who came as we were finishing up were still getting served. The second time, we got there at 10:40, and they were out - they had been out for over an hour. Apparently there was some kind of game that day and they were cleaned out of everything except sausage. We saw some regulars getting served from a secret back-up stock, and as disappointed as we were, it was OK.
BTW - the brisket is the most tender I have ever had - I actually have never come across more tender brisket anywhere. The flavor was good, very good, but one particular trip to Smitty's and many to Black's hold memories of superior flavor.
Driving conditions were favorable, one visit in early fall, one in spring, 41-44, 2 male/1 female, Italian Irish Finnish, depends on the issues.
Depends on which meat you want. They usually run out of brisket first. I'd get there comfortably before 10am if I were you.
Many people just send out a driver with a cooler, and pack the hot bbq back home for an early lunch.
Call them and ask!
They've added capacity, so 8 AM is no longer a must. But we've never arrived later than 10 AM, so I can't tell you what happens after that.
Husband and I have been three times - 2 last summer and one early fall. The first trip in early July, we arrived shortly after 9:00am, skeptical of eating brisket for breakfast. There was no line and we were sold for life. Second trip (late July or early August), we called ahead and set aside a whole brisket and a whole pork butt to pick up. Got there around 10:00am. There was a long line, but they weren't sold out. Third time, in early October, we got there around 9:30am. There was a short line, but they had plenty of all meat, but a huge line formed shortly after our arrival.
As I said, I wasn't sure about eating an abundance of smoked meat for breakfast, but the brisket was so good on the first trip, I didn't think about what time it was after the first bite. Tell that to your worried friend. It's best to go early and eat it while it's hot. If you want to call ahead and take it home in a cooler to eat closer to lunchtime, I really do suggest getting a whole brisket as it travels better. And think of all the perfectly tender and delicious leftover brisket you can put away in your freezer. It's a worthwhile experience.
As everybody's mentioned, many people come to Snow's and pick up meat to take to parties, sporting events, etc. I got there about 9:45 and stood in a short line and they had plenty of meat left, but I did notice that the drunk-before-10:00-am frat types who came in while we were sitting there eating (maybe not actually drunk, but definitely at least tipsy, with beers in hand), bought about 20 pounds of meat. It only takes a few buyers like that to wipe out the supply pretty quickly. On the plus side, if you email or call them by Thursday, they are happy to set aside some meat for you to pick up later. I think they'll hold meat until noon or later if you need them to.
I have arrived as late as 10:30 on one occasion (late last summer, I think), and there was plenty of brisket to sell then. But, as noted above, the supply is subject to circumstances like big games and other special occasions that encourage people to stock up on huge amounts of meat. For my part, I was pretty nervous about getting there so late, until I saw the meat. If you don't want to pack up your brisket and take it home for later, and you're not an early-rising type who can start in on the BBQ at 8:00, then I would certainly recommend an arrival time no later than between 9:30 and 10:00.
How many ppl do you have going out there? They're real nice and if you've got a good number of folks looking to eat BBQ then my guess is you could get 'em to hold some for you if you call a good bit in advance.
Does the quality of the brisket depend on the time? I arrived towards 11 on my only visit there, and the brisket was disappointingly dry (especially considering all the raves). The ribs and sausage were delicious though.
We just went on Saturday (3/20). We got in line around 9:45 (short line) and between the group got everything they offered. The brisket was fork tender (with texture more like pot roast) and while it was fresh and hot it was outstanding. The rub is a little salty but good flavor. Not 2 bites in I remembered I was supposed to take my wife some BBQ. A line was starting to form so I decided to get it then rather than run the risk of them running out. In the time it took me to get that to go (about 15 more mins in line) my brisket had dried out and become almost like jerky. Still excellent flavor but just dried out. Everyone in the group noticed that as it sat it got more dried out. I presume just over cooked. One of the guys insisted that the brisket and chicken ship very well.
I will say, when it is hot and fresh I would agree it is some of the best brisket around.
I was out there in late October, and due to a late start didn't get there until 10. There was meat left and the line was short (really didn't seem to be a lot of poeple there).
I would agree with other posts in this thread though, it is probably a crap shoot and you may get there the day that there is a big game or some other group buys tons of meat.