Brooklyn may not be where great barbecue originated, but enough pitmasters have been drawn to the borough to make it a great place to sample styles from all over the country.
Dan Delaney is obsessed with Texas BBQ — so obsessed that he hauled an 18-ft smoker from Austin to Brooklyn to set up Briskettown. He serves the “Texas trinity” of brisket, pork ribs, and hot link sausages. On Tuesdays, you can get a $1 Lone Star, beef ribs on Wednesdays, and they have pie every day. It’s all fresh, all the time.
The best cornbread around
Yes, Dinosaur Bar-B-Que is from upstate New York, and yes, it’s good. The menu is ginormous, but you may want to skip the more exotic-sounding items and head straight for the pork ribs. Their mac and cheese is a force to be reckoned with, and the honey hush cornbread is some of the best around. This is a huge restaurant that is good for groups, and you can make a reservation online. They also have an excellent beer menu, with a good mix of choices from New York state and points south.
Not so much a restaurant as a proper, Texas-style barbecue hall, Hometown BBQ is well worth the trip to Red Hook. The beef ribs have been called the best outside of Texas (by real live Texans!) and they open each day and serve until they run out.
One of everything
If you’re after Texas-style brisket, Morgan’s is really the place. The pitmaster, John Avila, came to Brooklyn from Franklin’s BBQ, a place in Austin where eager eaters line up several hours before the doors open each morning. Go for the fatty brisket, the pulled pork, and the loaded baked potato.
The Deluxe platter
Mable’s has Texas BBQ, as well as saucier, St. Louis-style ribs, and their sides hail from all over American barbecue country. You can order such high-class items as Frito pie or Velveeta-RoTel queso, and the barbecue comes with Wonder Bread. There’s also a full bar including a killer Mint Julep.
An amalgam of different styles, Smoke Joint calls its cuisine New York barbecue. The pulled pork and the chopped barbecue chicken are both fantastic, as are the beef short ribs. Their bourbon selection is pretty impressive too, at the attached Pig Bar. If you’re feeling up for something spicy, head to Smoke Joint’s sister restaurant, Peaches HotHouse, for Nashville-style chicken.