On a special bonus episode of "What's Eric Eating," Feges BBQ co-owner Patrick Feges and Houston Barbecue Festival co-founder Michael Fulmer join CultureMap food editor Eric Sandler to discuss Texas Monthly's newly released list of the state's 50 best barbecue restaurants.
The conversation begins with the three reviewing the list's ranked top 10, which includes four newcomers in its top five and finds 2017's number one, Snow's BBQ in Lexington, moved to ninth. Fulmer shares some thoughts on Interstellar BBQ, the Austin restaurant that takes second place; Feges offers some insights on Seguin's Burnt Bean Co, the year old restaurant that the magazine ranks as the state's fourth best barbecue joint.
From there, they turn the attention to the seven Houston-area restaurants on the list: Truth Barbeque (ranked third), Blood Bros. BBQ (Bellaire), Brett's Barbecue Shop (Katy), CorkScrew BBQ (Spring), Feges BBQ (Spring Branch), Killen's Barbecue (Pearland), and Tejas Chocolate + Barbecue (Tomball). Feges, who operates two locations of his restaurant in partnership with his wife, chef Erin Smith, explains what it means to earn a spot on Texas Monthly's list.
"We're super excited. It's partly validation of the hard work we've put in, and we're hoping it helps bring more attention to us," Feges says. "Dealing with Covid the last year-and-a-half, I'm ready for some people to discover us and come through the door."
The take a closer look at Brett's, the three-year old restaurant in Katy that distinguished itself with its carefully smoked brisket, housemade sausages, and scratch-made sides. A recent meal convinced Fulmer that Brett's is a worthy addition.
"What I had this past weekend was earth-shattering fantastic," he says. "It was incredible, the brisket was moist, what he's doing with sausage is creative and it works."
All three participants also take issue with San Antonio's 2M Smokehouse not being ranked in the top 10. Sandler cites it as one place he expected to see, and both Fulmer and Feges agree.
"They were robbed. 2M should be in the top 10," Feges affirms. "[Pitmaster-owner] Esaul Ramos was nominated for a James Beard Award last year. They're putting out fantastic food."
Listen to the full episode to hear their thoughts on Roegels Barbecue Co. not being included in the top 50, the Houston-area restaurants named to the honorable mentions list, and more.