A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from December 06, 2006
Barbecue Capital of Texas (Lockhart nickname)

The Texas legislature has declared the city of Lockhart to be the “Barbecue Capital of Texas.” Some people disagree about the designation, but Lockhart is located in what is called the “barbecue belt” of Texas.


Wikipedia: Lockhart, Texas
Lockhart is a city in Caldwell County, Texas, United States. It is the county seat of Caldwell County. The city of Lockhart is named after Bryd Lockhart, an assistant surveyor and reportedly the first Anglo to set foot in Caldwell County. Byrd Lockhart is survived by James H. Lockhart and his family, who currently reside in Dallas. Lockhart was the site of a victory of the Texans over the Comanche, at the Battle of Plum Creek in 1840. The Texas Legislature proclaimed Lockhart as The Barbecue Capital of Texas. Lockhart has four major barbecue restaurants: Black’s Barbecue, Smitty’s Market, Kreuz Barbecue, and Chisholm Trail Barbecue. The local style of barbecue cooking does not use barbecue sauce. The 1996 Christopher Guest comedy film Waiting for Guffman was filmed partly in Lockhart, including the historic courthouse square. Lockhart’s Dr. Eugene Clark Library is the oldest operating public library in Texas.

City of Lockhart: BBQ Capital of Texas
The Barbecue Capital of Texas
There are four BBQ restaurants in Lockhart. The restaurants estimate that about 5,000 people visit their establishments each week. This would be roughly 250,000 people a year who eat BBQ in Lockhart.

Blacks Barbeque
Located at 215 N. Main Street is internationally known and was established in 1932. It is one of the oldest barbecue restaurants in Texas that has been continuously owned and operated by the same family. (Blacksbbq.com) Black’s has been recognized in various publications such as the New York Times and Texas Monthly magazine. The May, 1997 issue of Texas Monthly selected Black’s BBQ as one of Texas’ fifty best barbecue restaurants. During President Lyndon Johnson’s term in the 1960’s, the President asked Black’s BBQ to provide barbecue sausage to be served on the grounds of the U.S. Capital in front of the Smithsonian Institute. With Secret Service and Department of the Agriculture personnel supervising the operations, the sausage was prepared and flown directly to Washington, D.C. for this Presidential affair.

Chisholm Trail Barbeque
Located at 1323 S. Colorado, is a young upstart as things go in the Lockhart barbecue business. The restaurant was opened in 1978 by Floyd Wilhelm who sold his fishing boat to raise enough money to open a restaurant. According to Wilhelm, ‘sometimes I look back and think I must have been crazy. Starting a barbecue place here was like putting a ballpark across from Yankee Stadium since Kreuz Market has been in business since 1900 and rated by some as best in the nation, and Black’s Barbecue started smoking in 1932 and advertises itself as the ‘Oldest in Texas-Same Family.’

Kreuz Barbeque
Kreuz Market (pronounced “Krites") located at 619 North Colorado Street might be the most unique dining experience you’ve ever had. The beef, sausage or pork is served on brown butcher paper. No side dishes here. But you can enjoy a slice of cheddar cheese, chunk of onion, fresh tomatoes, avocado and your favorite beverage. Don’t ask for barbecue sauce. They don’t have it and quite honestly are offended if anyone asks. The owners say, ‘good barbecue doesn’t need sauce.’

Smittys Market
Located at 208 S. Commerce. When you’re the Barbecue Capital of Texas, and you already have three of the best barbecue joints in the state, what do you do when another one comes along? You loosen your belt and settle in for some more great eating ‘cause there’s no such thing as too much good barbecue!

Ezine articles
HOME::Travel-and-Leisure
On the Texas Barbecue Trail
By Paris Permenter and John Bigley

Unlike Kansas City and Memphis, Texas has no clearly defined capital of ‘que. But Texas does have what’s sometimes nicknamed the “barbecue belt,” a smoky swath that runs through the central part of the state and includes:

Llano: On the westernmost edge of the barbecue belt lies the community of Llano. What makes Llano unique among the central Texas barbecue towns is its cooking style. Most pit masters in this town rely on indirect barbecuing. In a firebox, wood burns down to coals, then it’s transferred to the main section of the pit beneath the meat to impart a delicate smoky taste subtler than ordinary smoking. Don’t miss Cooper’s Old Time Pit Barbecue. From its huge rectangular pits located by the front door to the dining room lined with loaves of white bread and jars of jalapeño peppers, this is the real deal.

Taylor: Taylor calls itself “The Barbecue Capital of the World,” home of two legendary barbecue joints separated only by a parking lot and small road at their locations on Second Street. Louis Mueller’s is housed in one of the most authentic barbecue joints in Texas, with an old-fashioned screen door, smoke- covered walls, and giant fans that provide the only cool breeze on a hot summer day. Next door, Rudy Mikeska’s serves its equally fine offerings in a more citified atmosphere. During his lifetime, Rudy Mikeska was the dean of Texas pitmasters. If there was a political function to be held, Rudy Mikeska and his barbecue specialties were there.

Elgin: In Texas, the town of Elgin is synonymous with sausage. The small community, located about 25 miles east of Austin, produces the sausage sold by many barbecue joints through the state. The best known of Elgin’s smokin’ stops is the Southside Market, probably one of the most recognized names in Texas barbecue lore. In business since 1882, the market is known for its Elgin hot sausage, sometimes known as Elgin Hot Guts.

Lockhart: Twenty-three miles south of Austin lies another “Barbecue Capital of Texas,” Lockhart. The test of a real Texan is to know the correct pronunciation of the town’s Kreuz Market. No, don’t say “Cruise.” It’s “Krites,” rhyming with “lights.” Also in town, don’t miss Smitty’s, housed in the building where the original Kreuz Market was located, and Black’s BBQ, which claims to be the oldest barbecue house in Texas continuously owned by the same family. Since 1932 the Black family has been firing up these brick pits every day for lunch and dinner.

Luling: Located east of Austin, Luling is the land of oil wells. No longer a boomtown, today the barbecue restaurants are the ones producing black gold. The best known spot in town is the City Market, a no-frills smoky meat market, with plenty of local atmosphere.

Texas Legislature
R E S O L U T I O N
WHEREAS, Of all the many culinary arts mastered in the Lone Star State, none commands the type of respect and admiration that is accorded barbecue, and no community in Texas can best the city of Lockhart when it comes to an appreciation for the extraordinary alchemy of post oak and patience; and
WHEREAS, The buckle of the Lone Star barbecue belt, Lockhart’s fortuitous location witnessed the confluence of Plains Indians, Hispanic vaqueros, and German immigrants; the technique, substance, and skill of a variety of cultures combined to establish barbecue as a favorite food of many Texans; and
WHEREAS, The city’s role as a major center on the historic Chisholm Trail spurred the continued refinement of barbecue, and today Lockhart is home to some of the state’s most historic, and best, barbecue establishments; and
WHEREAS, There is Black’s, owned by the same family since 1932, and Kreuz Market, which first fired its pits in 1900; founded in 1978, the Chisholm Trail Barbecue is a relative newcomer but, like the others, draws its share of fans from across Texas and indeed the United States; and
WHEREAS, From Amarillo to Brownsville and from El Paso to Nacogdoches, the renown which Lockhart barbecue enjoys is indeed widespread, and it is justly fitting to acknowledge that city’s preeminence at this time; now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 76th Texas Legislature hereby recognize Lockhart as the Barbecue Capital of Texas and extend to the city’s pit masters and other residents best wishes for continued success.
Speaker of the House
I certify that H.R. No. 1024 was adopted by the House on May 26, 1999, by a non-record vote. 

Google Groups: austin.food
From:  vonroach
Date:  Wed, Mar 5 2003 8:30 am

On Tue, 04 Mar 2003 16:19:36 -0600, Jim Riley wrote:
>On Mon, 24 Feb 2003 16:53:04 GMT, JLH wrote:

>>The State also officially designated Lockhart the BBQ capital of Texas.
>It was only a House of Representatives resolution (HR 1024 76(R)).
>The resolution suggests that the reason is:

> WHEREAS, The buckle of the Lone Star barbecue belt, Lockhart’s
> fortuitous location witnessed the confluence of Plains Indians,
> Hispanic vaqueros, and German immigrants; the technique, substance,
> and skill of a variety of cultures combined to establish barbecue as
> a favorite food of many Texans; and

> WHEREAS, The city’s role as a major center on the historic Chisholm
> Trail spurred the continued refinement of barbecue, and today
> Lockhart is home to some of the state’s most historic, and best,
> barbecue establishments; and

Little Chamber of Commerce ploy. Probably most of the legislature never heard of the place, until they had to search so hard to find a decent meal in Austin. A confluence’ of `Plains indians’ (few comanches perhaps), `Hispanic vaqueros’ (perhaps a cowhand or two from some creole spread far distant from well settled areas of Mexico), and `German immigrants’ (probably mostly Czech) was a little bit of an exaggeration for an watering hole on an west east road to Nachidoches and Louisiana, actually not on the main trail. 

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Wednesday, December 06, 2006 • Permalink