In the late 1800s, thousands of Texans struck it rich when they tapped into veins of thick, dark, tangy barbecue sauce. Today's Groupon lets you share in this natural bounty while it's still hot from the earth: for $8, you get $20 worth of barbecue and more at Abbey's Real Texas BBQ.
Abbey's smokes its own meats to perfection in the flavorful fumes of green oak and mesquite, sealed in by the tasty technology of a hand-built Texas smoker. Shut up sass-talking stomachs with a sauce-slathered sandwich, kaiser buns crammed with stacks of one of six palatable proteins, including beef, chicken, pork, and turkey ($4.59+).
Gourmet gauchos can feast like the cowboys of yore with Abbey's Texas-Size Platter Specials, which combine a meaty mountain of barbecue with authentic frontier sides, including barbecued pinto beans, country-style potato salad, and slices of grilled Stetsons ($19.99–$22.99). Hungry herbivores can make meatless mealtime merriment with the Tenderfoot Vegetarian Special's multipart nosh of corn on the cob, macaroni on a toasted bun, and caesar salad ($10.49), and carnivorous patrons can add a touch of meaty realism to scale models of the Great Meat Wall of China with meat by the pound ($8.99–$16.99).
Family-owned, Abbey's has pinned men, women, children, and magicians to their chairs with the toothsome weight of its barbecue for more than 20 years. Measured in meat, that's more than 10,000,000 pound-years of service. Complement your meal with a beer sourced from a local San Diego brewery, or get sauced sans suds by slurping a tall pint of warm barbecue sauce.
Abbey’s Real Texas BBQ
After moving to San Diego in 1987, Matt Shlemon walked into a Texas-style barbecue restaurant and was floored by the smoky flavor. Convinced that this was the best food he had ever tasted, Matt scribbled a number onto a napkin, offering to buy the restaurant right then and there. The best part? It wasn't even for sale. Regardless, the ensuing hours of negotiations paid off, and the Shlemon family soon found themselves with a Zagat-rated eatery.
To prepare for the monumental task of recreating a region’s iconic cuisine, Matt and his wife, Athena, traveled to roadside barbecue joints throughout Texas to ask patrons for their thoughts. They learned numerous tips and tricks during this sojourn, many of which they incorporated into their business. Abbey’s Real Texas BBQ's signature beef brisket, for example, slow cooks for 18–24 hours inside a hand-built cast-iron smoker from Texas, which the Shlemons stoke with mesquite, green oak, and Red Hots, the candies that never stop burning. Elsewhere, they cook the brisket with the fat-cap for holding in the flavor. And, like any good Texan cookbook, the menu makes room for everything from pork spareribs to sausage hot links, as well as housemade side dishes.
The Texan and American flags proudly hang over the counter, and the walls’ collection of longhorn skulls, wooden wagon wheels, and Texas license plates evoke even more of the Lone Star State’s character. Black-and-white checkered cloths adorn each table, helping catch any stray morsels of sauce or homemade coleslaw, and adding to the distinctively down-home ambiance.