Friday, January 18, 2013

Micklethwait Craft Meats 1.12.2013

So the other day I went by to sample Tom Micklethwait’s barbecue for an Austin Chronicle review, which will run on Thursday, Jan 24th. This blogpost is just a little tease before the article comes out. It’s situated in a way-cool vintage 1960 Comet travel trailer that Tom found out by the Lake and then re-did, and his vintage smoker sits in an adjacent screen trailer; look for them a few doors east of Ray Tatum’s Three Little Pigs trailer and East End Wines. I had asked Tom to make me a big plate, with everything, because I hadn’t eaten all day and was in need of a smoked meat rush.



Tom, with 2 hours sleep the night before......



the rustic menu......



1960 Comet trailer.....



Tom's smoker used to be the water boiler at Pflugerville High School before Tom and a friend welded its ass into a smoking work of art......



business end of the slicing board......

He had four sausages that day: duck with cherry, lamb with orange, garlicky kielbasa, and all-beef with jalapeño. I had them all. He stuffs all his own sausages, and the quality and taste are beyond compare. The duck was the only emulsified sausage, and it literally melted in the mouth, with waves of duck richness. When he says “with cherry”, don’t assume that the cherries will dominate. Tom is all about subtlety and building up layers of flavor. All of the sausages were exemplary; flat blew me away.



He cut me some amazing slices of meltingly tender, smoky brisket, with a nice spicy crust and a penetrating smoke ring. The smoke here is an adjunct flavor that kisses the meat; it doesn’t slap you in the mouth. The slices of smoked pork loin were superb, on a par with the pork loin that Tootsie cooks over at Snow’s BBQ in Lexington. The baby back ribs were excellent, done with a dry rub and no glops or slops. I prefer a meatier sparerib, but flavor-wise these guys were first-rate.



The chicken, which I normally pass up because it’s almost always overcooked, was moist, with a crisp, lacquered skin loaded with flavor. The barbecue sauce is perfect: garlicky, spicy, sweet, sour, and tomato-based. I loved the slaw with bits of lemon zest, and the spud salad is nice also, dressed with both mayo and mustard. Had some experimental cuke salad with yogurt and mint that could have used a touch of sweet to balance out the tartness of the yogurt, but it was fine. Bottom line, Tom Micklethwait deserves all the business he wants; this is first rate barbecue, and the best sausage in town. You’d have to drive out to Billy Inman’s in Marble Falls and eat some of his fantastic smoked turkey sausage to reach this caliber of stuffed gut. Great stuff. Eat at Micklethwait’s.



close-up of brisket... 



my delicious plate.......

1309 Rosewood Ave, ATX, 78702
(512) 791-5961
https://www.facebook.com/MIcklethwaitCraftMeats

Mick Vann ©


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