BBQ

If you own a restaurant and have the word “barbeque” in the name, especially here in Texas, the food better be good. For those in Mid-County, Fast Freddy’s Barbeque has been one of the most popular food joints for more than 30 years. But for others who are just now hearing about it, it’s well worth the short trip to 3113 Nederland Ave.

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Taking a cheese lover’s favorite like creamy mac and cheese and adding slow-smok
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit – Nederland owner Raju Ali slices jalapeño cheddar kielbas

Texans take their barbecue very seriously. Just take a look at the numbers. According to CHD Expert, a firm that collects data and restaurant information for more than 14,000 barbecue restaurants across the U.S., in terms of total barbecue places, Texas leads the nation with 2,238 total restaurant locations and 1,931 independent locations. In fact, when considering the number of barbecue restaurants per capita, Texas has one for roughly every 12,000 people.

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A warm summer night, friends, fireworks and barbecue: What is there not to love about the Fourth of July? It doesn’t matter if you’re traveling to the beach, the lake or staying at home; almost everyone does a little outdoor cooking for the holiday. It is definitely a time to celebrate and gather with friends old and new. Lately I have been smoking every weekend as I plan to enter the competition circuit on a limited basis this year, and I am trying to get my seasoning and timing down.

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Patillo’s owner Robert Patillo (right) visits with customer Glenn Parsley, who h
Link plate with beans, rice and potato salad. Don’t forget the pickles and onion

When thinking about the best barbecue in Beaumont, Patillo’s definitely comes to mind. It’s also the fourth oldest barbecue joint in Texas, so it’s always garnering statewide attention.

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The Jefferson County Go Texan Committee will host its annual barbecue cook-off on Friday, April 8, and Saturday, April 9, at the Elk’s Lodge (11431 Highway 90) in Beaumont. Cooks will compete in multiple categories like jackpot pinto beans, chicken, pork ribs and beef brisket. A dinner, dance and auction will be held Friday night as Twangsters Union takes the stage. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door.

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I awoke early one Saturday morning, ate a banana and had a glass of orange juice, and headed out the door in search of top notch competition barbecue. This quest had me going to Huntsville for the Shotgun Fred’s BBQ Showdown. It is the closest Kansas City BBQ Society event of the year, and I was happy it was only a two-hour drive from home. I arrived at 10 a.m. for the judges’ meeting and just in time to judge the first side dish – beans.

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 What’s the best barbecue? I get asked this question almost daily. Being that tastes vary from region to region and person to person, I thought the best thing for me to do was to put together a list of my favorite barbecue.

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