One of the best food festivals of the year (for people who eat meat, especially) is the Texas Monthly BBQ Fest. The meat-lovers nirvana fortunately takes place on October 30 this year at the Long Center, and tickets go on sale Thursday at 10 a.m. at TMBBQ.com. As always, the fest features smoked meat from many of the magazine’s past Top 50 list, 27 this year alone, and features cold beer and live music (this year from Santiago Jimenez Jr. and Warren Hood. Tickets cost $80 for general admission, $165 for VIP, $10 for children 5 and under. The fest is a scant three hours (1 p.m. to 4 p.m.), but VIP tickets get you in an hour early and access to a cool patio with some drinks and cheese and things. Tickets will set out quickly.
Featured big names this year include Two Bros. BBQ Market (San Antonio), Snow’s BBQ (Lexington), Killen’s Barbecue (Pearland), La Barbecue (Austin), Louie Mueller Barbecue (Taylor), and Franklin Barbecue. The magazine invites one “Newcomer” to the festival each year, and this year’s honoree is Evie Mae’s of Lubbock, receiving the nod.
The fest is preceded this year by a new event, the TMBBQ Brisket Brunch, on a Saturday at 11 a.m. at Juliet Ristorante (1500 Barton Springs Rd.). The meal will feature an a collaborative barbecue brunch menu from pitmaster Thomas Abramowicz, of the Beast of Paris, France, and Chef Jacob Weaver, of Juliet Ristorante. Tickets are $85 each (cocktails included) and also go on sale at 10 a.m. Thursday.
I took my own barbecue road trip around parts of Texas earlier this year, and you can read about that here.