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We’ve been waiting a while to check this place out. Back in 2009, we took a trip down to Austin and tried to find it. I’m pretty sure it was just out of eye sight and we turned around. Let me tell you this time around there was no turning back!
The Salt Lick is BBQ.
Here, let me just show you!
Did I get your attention?!
That was our reaction when we saw the grill too.
We knew The Salt Lick was popular but we really didn’t have any idea how popular. When we pulled into the parking lot, it was packed. When I say packed, I really mean at least 300 cars. Maybe at least 400. I’m not a good judge at these things but there were A LOT. We had gotten this far, there was no turning back.
Turns out there was a 45 minute wait, and it was a “good” night. “Not that busy” we were told. Oh my. We didn’t care. We were here on a mission. We decided to explore.
The first building we saw (first picture above) was a wine tasting building. Don’t let me fool you, it actually has a “real name” I just have no idea what it is. The Salt Lick has an on site vineyard so you can go into this building and taste some samples, eat some cheese, feel sophisticated and such. I wanted to taste the wine but I really have absolutely clue about anything wine related so as intimidated as I felt, I walked out looking for the beer.
Yes, how convenient. While you wait, you can buy beer (by the six pack), wine, fresh squeezed lemonade, popcorn and even play some bocce ball. You can also bring your own cooler filled with your choice of beverages. Yes, it’s food paradise.
I actually had to teach a couple guys how to play bocce ball. Sy said “She’s Canadian. She will tell you how to play.”. Thank you Mr. Texas. My grandfather use to love playing this game.
So then we waited for our table. In paradise.
We’re two good lookin’ people!
This entire deck was filled with picnic tables under these huge trees all strung with lights. In the next “waiting” section, there was some live music to keep us company.
Anticipation is horrible. Mr. Texas turned into Curious George.
“Can we go inside and check out the grill?”
Yes. Yes you can. You can even walk around the grill to take a picture.
Oh boy did I feel special, until I was informed they let everyone do this! But how awesome?!
I’m not sure if I can really put into words the atmosphere of this restaurant. It’s located in the most beautiful countryside there is. It’s relaxing and just feels like home. The restaurant itself is actually in two buildings, the original (above) and a newer building (which looks as if you are sitting outside with the big windows all wrapped around the building). Our waitress told us that both seat about 1,300 people and we lucked out because a 45 minute wait is nothing. Sometimes, it gets up to two hours. Let’s take a second here, a two hour wait for a restaurant that can sit 1,300 people?! Crazy, but it is worth it. I would wait the two hours and obviously I’m not the only one.
Let’s talk about the menu. It’s definitely affordable and not as expensive as we thought. Brisket, pork ribs, sausage and turkey. Sides consist of potato salad, coleslaw and beans. Typical BBQ. Exceptionally delicious. To give you a hint of the prices, you can get “Family Style” which is all you can eat for $19.95. This includes unlimited brisket, sausage, pork ribs, potato salad, coleslaw and beans. You should come hungry because for that price you’ll have a hard time finding that good of a deal anywhere else (and I’m pretty sure it won’t be as good.)
Here is Sy’s “Family Style”. Let me tell you – that bread was delicious!
I opted for the Combo plate which was two meats, potato salad, coleslaw and beans. I’m not a fan of beans so my opinion really doesn’t matter on that. The potato salad tasted like a mustard (which is how potato salad is made in the South) twice baked potato salad. The coleslaw had a sweet cucumber dill taste to it. To be honest, I wasn’t here for the sides and I don’t think either of us were overly impressed with the sides. The meat is where it was at! I had brisket on my brain. The turkey was good but my heart was won over by the brisket. Holy Moly! Was it ever good. And have I mentioned the BBQ sauce? It had a kick of what we think is honey mustard but it was just downright mouthwatering. The meat was delicious with out but it was phenomenal with the sauce. If anything, I really wish I had bought a bottle. I’m not sure what I was thinking.
Now this bread that I mentioned. Soft. Sweet. Oh so good. Who doesn’t like some carbs deep down inside?! My meal was so scrumptious, I made what I called a “fat sandwich”. Yes, I was that person. I took a piece of the bread, broke it in half, cut up some brisket and put it right in there and made a little sandwich. To top it off, throw on some of that oh so good BBQ sauce and you’ve got a Fat Sandwich. Love it. It will love you back.
Now, you must be wondering if we were full at this point. Yes, stuffed really. Did that stop us from getting dessert. Heck no. We don’t know when we’ll be back! (We had a fridge in our hotel room.) Peach cobbler. The top was a cakey crust, kind of like my apple pie recipe I’ll be sharing a little later. Tasty!
We also got a ride on a golf cart back to our cars. That’s how awesome this place is. Have no shame in eating your heart out!
I’m going to be honest here and say that I truly thought that the best BBQ I have had was Rendezvous in Memphis. Rendezvous – you have some competition. Let’s just call it even and say you are the best in Tennessee. The Salt Lick – you own Texas. The atmosphere, the food, everything is just about as perfect as it can get. We can’t wait to go back!