Texas vrs KC barbecue


Lynn Dollar

TVWBB Emerald Member
Quilt shops and BBQ joints seem to go together like PBnJ. My wife and I joked for years that we would open a business, quilt shop up front BBQ out back. Sort of a small business mullet.

She no longer quilts, but the same principle applies to yarn and she is a knitter and a weaver.

Whenever we plan a trip, I am always looking up yarn and quilt shops near good eats. One trip to the deep south involved blues and BBQ joints in the Misssissippi Delta, NOLA, and a stop to meet the quilters of Gee's Bend. That's a BBQ and quilting trip that should be on your list; even more so if you're a fan of the blues.

Here's a good place to start for planning a trip to Texas:


If your wife is a knitter and you are near KC, a trip to the Yarn Barn in Lawrence is a must.

Well, we are blues fans, I had never thought about combining the two . I'll have to run this past her. She goes on day trips to quilting shops with her quilting clatch.

J Grotz

TVWBB Wizard
Well, we are blues fans, I had never thought about combining the two . I'll have to run this past her. She goes on day trips to quilting shops with her quilting clatch.
I don't want to take this thread too far off track, but that trip around the Delta (and into Alabama) was my favorite. The Delta Blues Museum, old juke joints, great BBQ, Civil War history (Vicksburg & Natchez), Viking's headquarters in Greenwood, Robert Johnson... My only regret from that trip was not making it up to Memphis. We put over 1200 miles on a rental car during that 12 day trip and it was parked for 5 days because of NOLA and a family reunion near Mobile. The Gee's Bend quilters are in Alabama. The closest bed for the night was Selma. The memory of my wife and I walking over the Pettus Bridge still gives me chills.

Mark Silver

Definitely Texas for brisket, sausage and chicken fried steak (not BBQ the the best place for it ever!) and KC for ribs although I have had great ribs in TX, too. I am not much of a sauce guy. I like it on the side to dip into if I want to, but not slathered on my bbq.


TVWBB Olympian
but I will admit that Texas seems to get a lion's share of the focus recently. I can remember when that wasn't the case.
Yea, I worked briefly in San Antonio back in the early 80's and BBQ was nowhere to be found.
Plenty of chili or burger joints and tex mix places.
Worked around Dallas a little later and found a few BBQ joints, but for this midwestern boy who was raised on hickory smoke, mesquite didn't do it for me.
I also did some work in KC and that BBQ was on the sweet side. I enjoyed it but BBQ in Chicago is more towards that Delta spicy /sweet side.
Last edited:

Dustin Dorsey

TVWBB Hall of Fame
What I've seen locally before the current BBQ boom was mostly mesquite smoked thinly sliced brisket. They would smoke them untrimmed and then separate the flat and point and scrap the fat off with the back of their knife. Lately people are doing more of a "Central Texas" style here. I find KC style sauces to be on the sweet side for me. I think KC Masterpiece sauce when I think about a Kansas City sauce. That might not be indictive of every sauce. My preference is something more like Stubb's. He started in Lubbock before moving to Austin. When say Texas BBQ has no sauce they really mean Central Texas meat market style which is far more specific. We have a local joint in Wichita Falls that has been open since 1925. Their sauce is unlike anything I've seen elsewhere. It's a thin orange sauce with vinegar, ketchup and mustard mixed with au jus. It's great on a chopped beef sandwich.

I was born in east Texas and I remember sauced up ribs. They didn't really use a rub. The sauce carried the seasonings.

Chris Allingham

Staff member
You should do a BBQ tour of both TX and KC. I went to Arthur Bryant's in 2000 when attending the American Royal, and I went to Franklin BBQ in 2012 when attending SXSW. But in 2015 when I was ready to do my first BBQ crawl and visit multiple spots...Texas got the nod. But I'm looking forward to a KC BBQ crawl in the next couple of years.

Chris S in YEG

Being from Canada the only exposure I have got to KC and Texas BBQ is what I have seen on TV, Internet and here. When doing my research for the best way to cook brisket the main name that kept coming up was Aaron Franklin. I read his books, watched and read what I could find on the internet. So for me my first trip into the BBQ region would be Texas. If I'm driving from Edmonton, Alberta I think I could swing through KC first then onto Texas.

Andy Linn

TVWBB Super Fan
enjoyed reading through this thread. I am biased toward KC as I grew up 2 hours south on 35 and visited several spots there over the years.

the wife and I have tried BBQ in North/South Carolina and Tennessee while driving the wheels off a rental car. We have also traveled through most of KS, MO, and OK. My AR experience has been limited but we have been several places in the last couple years.

We have been planning to visit Memphis this summer and do not have Texas on the mind.

the most impressed I have been with a shop running a smoker was at Taqueria el Asador in Pensacola of all places. We happened to have time to kill before an early flight and were there a couple hours before they opened. Talking with the guys while they setup and checking out their converted propane tank cookers. It was just skirt steak and chicken but those guys knew what they were about and did great work from prep thru service. They were cooking low and slow - it was BBQ in my mind.

Kevin L (NKY)

TVWBB Gold Member
Have you never thought about making a barbecue tour ?

I have. A lot. I'm here in between these two barbecue meccas. Whenever this covid thing is all over, and if I can get Mrs Dollar away from going on quilting retreats, I'm gonna hit one of these, maybe even both.
I think that would be fun and also very interesting as I beleive that every country in the world has some fourm of BBQ, as there is many more types of BBQ right here in the US than people bring up,heck there some cities that are split over types I am told.
I love the art of the cook. Some are simple others more detailed.
But it is at the table that counts the most.

Lynn Dollar

TVWBB Emerald Member
When I travel I look for local barbecue, fried chicken, and anything that might be considered a specialty. So instead of one dedicated tour I've done lots of little mini-tours.

Travis Clark's " Clarks Crew BBQ " ......... is maybe the most popular joint/restaurant in OKC right now. You should've made that stop when you through here last spring.

I haven't been. Along with the pandemic, I've been waiting for the crowds to die down, and they haven't died down. Amazing. It must be really good.

Mrs Dollar got the Moderna couple weeks ago, when she has immunity , we're headed there. Its first on my list.

Dustin Flavell

We have a local joint in Wichita Falls that has been open since 1925. Their sauce is unlike anything I've seen elsewhere. It's a thin orange sauce with vinegar, ketchup and mustard mixed with au jus. It's great on a chopped beef sandwich.
Dustin what’s the name of the joint? The sauce flavor combo sounds pretty good. Do they sell just the sauce?

J Hasselberger

If you’re talking about a “tour”, Central Texas will give you several weeks worth of eating. You can’t swing a dead cat in these parts without hitting a good joint or two. Austin, Lockhart, Luling, Taylor, San Antonio, Driftwood, Elgin are all within an hour or so of each other.

But that’s just my opinion.


TVWBB Member
This isn't really a fair question or comparison. Do you want to tour the 2nd largest state in the nation? One that will take nearly 13 hours to traverse from tip to stern, with hundreds/thousands of little hole in the wall joints that are amazing...or do you want to tour the 37th largest city in the US with dozens of great Que joints? Yes, I'm from Texas, Houston in fact..but I live in Missouri and have frequented KCs BBQ scene. Yes, Q39 is good but weird genderless bathrooms. Yes, I LOVE Gates BBQ. But Texas BBQ varies quite a bit. Central is different from East is different from South is different from West TX BBQ. Heck, even the gas stations - insert shameless Buckey's plug 😀, have good BBQ.

If it's a tour, I'd tour a state over a city but that's just me. ;)