Weekend family visitors requested some "real" Texas barbecue, so upon a recommendation from a friend, we headed to the "fake" Luling City Market for some smoked protein.
Its strip mall location didn't much bother, nor did the brash gentleman at the bar who repeatedly hurled loud, slurred insults at the Patriots-Chargers game (both teams were, strangely, "losers"). And I could tolerate the fact that the so-so sauce came in these obscenely small jars, which required violent shaking if I wanted anything more than a quarter-teaspoonful at a time. (Yes, I am a "sauce" girl with regards to barbecue, even if the meat has the most amazing dry rub. But that's another debate.)
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But I drew the line at dry shriveled sausage link that was completely devoid of flavor and the skinny pork ribs, half of which were tough and required extra sauce just to aid in mastication.
There is, however, one reason I would return to the "fake" Luling City Market.
The half chicken ($6.75) was amazingly juicy, pleasantly spicy, and had a crackly skin I could crunch on all day long. It soon occupied all my attention. Although I usually push aside the processed white bread in favor of potato salad, this time I found myself making a series of sandwiches with the falling-off-the-bone white meat, barbecue sauce, and some decent coleslaw.
Perhaps the whole point of Luling's interior design is that you get plastered at the bar before stumbling up to the cafeteria counter, so the barbeque looks like manna from heaven rather than mostly dehydrated meat. I suggest pre-gaming elsewhere, getting a half-chicken and a pint of coleslaw to go, and maybe switching out the sauce for something with more of a punch.