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Advice for 3.5 day BBQ Trip Itinerary

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Hi everyone,

My boyfriend and I are heading to Austin soon. We both love BBQ and have never been to Texas, so this trip is specifically for the purpose of eating. We have good appetites, don't mind driving, and are not concerned about price -- our main objective is to hit as many good places as we can in a limited amount of time. Our tentative itinerary is below. Please comment and let us know if we are missing anything. We'd also like suggestions on what to order at each place.

Sunday -- Our plane is scheduled to land at noon, so by the time we get our luggage and the rental car, it will probably be closer to 1pm. Where can we go for lunch? Assuming that Franklin's and J Mueller's will be sold out and many other places are closed, we are thinking of driving straight to either Salt Lick in Driftwood or Schoepf's in Belton. I know Salt Lick is closer, but I'm more interested in Schoepf's (my boyfriend wants Salt Lick). For Sunday dinner, we are planning on Lambert's. Or should we substitute Stiles Switch for either lunch or dinner?

Monday -- Lockhart (Kreuz, Smitty's) and Luling (City Market). Is it worth stopping at Black's and Luling BBQ as well?

Tuesday -- Cooper's in Llano and Opie's in Spicewood.

Wednesday (July 4th) -- Franklin's & J Mueller, then out to Louis Mueller in Taylor. I still have to confirm that these places will all be open on the Fourth of July and I'm not sure what effect the holiday may have on the lines. Does getting on line early at Franklin's and then going straight to J Mueller make sense? Or should the two of us split up and each wait at one? An alternate option could be doing Franklin's on Tuesday morning before heading out to Cooper's.

Thursday -- early flight home

Thanks in advance for all of your help!

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  1. i'd go to blacks over kreuz. i haven't had much luck with luling.

    salt like is more atmosphere then food. lamberts is good for non-bbq foods. the brunch at lamberts is excellent assuming you dont waste stomach space on the crappy bbq.

    definitley make sure you have franklin's, especially the ribs. the brisket is consistently very good (but pretty salty, which is a plus for me). too bad you aren't going to try snow's in lexington, i hear that is wonderful...

    1 Reply
    1. re: chrisdds98

      Thanks! Snow's was at the top of our list, but unfortunately, we're only in town from Sunday - Wednesday and my understanding is that Snow's is only open on Saturday mornings. Next time...

    2. For Lockhart I would say Black's and Lockhart BBq aren't necessary (Smitty's is my favorite, only been to Kreuz's once but wasn't overly impressed). I think Black's sides outshine its BBQ. I will also say that City Market is fantastic. They have my favorite sausage of all, their sides are good, and the brisket is pretty good. I will say that although I've had some of the best pork ribs ever there, it hasn't been as consistent as the rest.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ms1195

        I'd bet $1000 that both Franklin and Mueller's are closed on July 4, they take every opportunity to be closed as far as holidays and such. Here are some bbq opinions, someone will trash them but they are pretty correct if you ask me, ha: Salt Lick is fun and I really like their pork ribs. Schoepf's is much ado about nothing from my experience--here's a way to make alot of money selling mediocre bbq. All the Lockhart places go in front of anything but Franklin. City Market too. Not that Franklin is necessarily better but it's Huge to have something in town in that league. Mueller's in Taylor and Austin and Stiles Switch all have great beef ribs. I like Cooper's. I'd go to all the Lockhart places and city market and Franklin more than once. Then I'd go to Franklin. And Mueller's. And Stiles Switch but just for beef ribs. They have good sausage too. Lockhart and Franklin.