Back on the Central-Texas Barbecue Trail, my next stop was the world-famous Franklin BBQ. A relative newcomer to the barbecue scene compared to the longstanding Salt Lick, Aaron Franklin opened up shop in 2009 in a parking lot in East Austin. It wasn’t long before it was being hailed as the best barbecue in central Texas, and as I’ve related in my other posts that’s really saying something!
After talking about going all semester, a group of us MPAs decided to go on the Saturday before Thanksgiving since there was not a lot going on school-wise during that short week before Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate. In what was probably the worst weather we will experience here in Austin, we set out to Franklin at about 10:00am.
Upon arrival, we immediately recognized that our theory of “since the weather is so bad, there won’t be that many people waiting,” was not only shared by many others, but also was most definitely incorrect. Even with a temperature in the 30s with light rain sprinkling randomly, there was a line winding through the parking lot almost to the next block. A hostess came through the line to ask what we were going to order and she let us know that the estimated time of arrival at the front of the line was about 1:00pm.
If you make it to Franklin BBQ, make sure you bring friends because you won’t want to just order a sandwich. You can order by the pound, and after a three hour wait you would have wasted your time to only get a personal plate. There were six of us, so we ordered 4 pounds of brisket, 2 racks of pork ribs, and 1 pound of sausage.
I’m not sure if it was the wait or if I was just happy to be inside out of the horrible weather, but as we started to feast on the smorgasbord of barbecue, we all knew that it was worth it. The brisket was far superior to anything else I have tried in Texas, and the sausage was incredible. There were several options for sauce on the table, and they liberally handed out white sandwich bread that we could use as a vehicle for transporting the barbecue to our stomachs. All in all, Franklin BBQ did not disappoint even with the unusually long wait – if you’re in Austin, you’ll have to make time for Franklin in addition to Salt Lick!