Barbecue Buyout

Cowboys star Dez Bryant taps Houston barbecue joint to cater huge party

Cowboys star Dez Bryant taps Houston barbecue joint to cater big party

Dez Bryant Grant Pinkerton Pinkerton's Barbecue
Dez Bryant and Grant Pinkerton smile for the camera. Courtesy photo
Pinkerton's Barbecue Dez Bryant party
The Pinkerton's crew served over 1,000 people. Courtesy photo
Grant Pinkerton barbecue beef rib
Seen here at his restaurant, Grant Pinkerton earned a place on Texas Monthly's top 50 barbecue joints list. Photo by Eric Sandler
Dez Bryant Grant Pinkerton Pinkerton's Barbecue
Pinkerton's Barbecue Dez Bryant party
Grant Pinkerton barbecue beef rib

Restaurants being bought out for private events isn’t all that unusual, as anyone who has ever tried to book a table at a steakhouse during OTC has discovered. Similarly, good barbecue restaurants sell out of meat almost every day.

Despite both of those situations being fairly routine, Pinkerton’s Barbecue’s experience with a buyout that closed it during lunch on Thursday occurred under unusual circumstances. Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant selected the Heights-area barbecue joint to cater a party he threw in his hometown of Lufkin on Thursday.

“Dez called himself,” pitmaster Grant Pinkerton tells CultureMap. “He called my buddy’s phone around 4 pm and said ‘I want everything on the pit right now and double it.’”

All in, that turned out to be 230 pounds of brisket, 200 pounds of pork ribs, 180 pounds of sausage, 80 pounds of beef ribs, and 100 pounds of pulled pork. The restaurant also provided 120 pounds of potato salad along with beans and coleslaw.

At first, Bryant posted to Facebook that he spent $13,000 on the catering; he later posted that he spent $16,000. Pinkerton estimates he and his crew fed well over 1,000 people.

“I have a video of the line walking through,” Pinkerton says. “It took me a whole minute to walk from one side of the line to the end.”

As for why Bryant selected the restaurant, Pinkerton thinks it helps that both one of his college roommates and a Pinkerton’s employee are from Lufkin. The Pro Bowler apparently follows the barbecue joint’s social media closely enough that he complimented a video it recently posted to Facebook.

“I didn’t really know what to expect. I’d only see him on ESPN,” Pinkerton says. “He was super nice. First thing he did when he had me come bring him food was that he served all the kids in the room first.”

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