JJ's Cluckers satiates poultry-loving palates with an extensive menu of flavorsome fowl served in a fun and family-oriented setting. Warm up incisors with pickle chips—battered and fried dill slices served with ranch dressing ($5.25)—before treating taste buds to sauce-soused wings ($7.99 for 10 bone-in wings). Liquid wing enhancers range from the silky-smooth honey barbecue to the hotter chipotle to the scorching code 5150, which provides an epicurean experience akin to hacky sacking a lava rock with your tongue.
When husband-and-wife team Otto and Annie Sofka first founded Otto's Barbecue and Hamburgers in 1950, they never dreamed barbecue would become the meat and potatoes of the family's livelihood. The small corner grocery store specialized in canned and boxed goods—that is until Annie started cooking up hamburgers at the request of hungry regulars. As the popularity of Annie’s burgers grew, the store’s shelves were cleared out to make room for tables and chairs to accommodate the growing lines of customers. Within two years, the Sofkas were officially in the burger business. By the ’60s, they were ready to add old family barbecue recipes to the menu, and Otto’s has been a favorite pit stop for Houston barbecue lovers ever since.
Three generations have now manned the kitchen at Otto’s, satisfying customers as varied as George Bush Sr., Liberace, and George Foreman with barbecue that has been smoked in a hickory grill for 18 hours. Chefs pair seven meat choices, including beef brisket, slow-smoked pork ribs, and sausage links, with a range of homestyle sides and giant stuffed potatoes, creating full meals that showcase the flavors of the South better than an art installation built from chicken-fried steaks. The chefs at Otto’s also serve up their own line of bottled sodas, ensuring enough frothy root beer, orange soda, and cream soda to wash down the saucy eats.
Dickey?s Barbecue Pit has smoked beef brisket in-house nearly every night since 1941, painting each morsel with a tangy house-made sauce. Pulled pork, turkey breast, and polish sausage round out the menu with meals that are heartier than a burrito wrapped in Paul Bunyan?s plaid shirt. Boxed lunches and catered buffets brim with homestyle sides such as coleslaw, mac 'n' cheese, and jalape?o beans. Once the last pickle has been crunched and the last finger has been licked, guests can savor one of the restaurant?s most cherished traditions: a vanilla cone, on the house.
Houston's Stockyard Bar-B-Q is the place to be if you're in the mood for smoky, sweet barbecued food. Stockyard is open seven days a week, so you can come get a bite of delicious barbecue any time your busy life permits. Come on down and sample the rosemary turkey breast sandwich for a lunchtime treat, or order up a pound of ribs done any way you like them: dry and spicy or sweet and wet, pork or beef—the choice is yours. Stockyard caters, too, so give them a call the next time you want to impress guests at a special event with the best barbecue in town.
You can tell a good barbecue joint when one of its menu sections is titled simply "Meat." These meats slay the bland and defend the savory. Smoked for hours in a solid brick pit (originally built in 1934), Pizzitola's beef brisket melts into your plate, while the chicken turns buttery soft beneath skin cracked and crisped. The rough-textured sausage, made as it has been for years by two Czech brothers in Cistern, sidles up well against pinto beans and mustardy potato salad. The family-style meal includes a full pound of sliced (or chopped) beef brisket, half pound of sausage, half pound of sliced pork, half of a chicken, a side of barbecue sauce, and one pint each of pinto beans, potato salad, and coleslaw.