The 8 Best Barbecue Restaurants in Houston

Rosemeyer's brisket ready to be sliced and served.

Leonard Botello IV has become a doyen of Central Texas barbecue since opening the snug first location of Truth BBQ in 2015 on a highway connecting Houston and Austin. Truth became a barbecue institution, and in 2019, he opened a large, sleek Houston outpost. “We have a lot of diversity in Houston, which pushes places around us—not just barbecue restaurants, but restaurants in general—to lean into that diversity and those flavor profiles,” says Botello.

Though he can execute an immaculate Texas Trinity, Botello’s genius lies in his success with playful experimentation. Think pastrami brisket, South Carolina-style whole hog (available on Saturdays), or brisket boudin—inspired by local Cajun and Creole culture. No trip to Truth is complete without an order of the cheesy, crisp tater tot casserole and, to round out the meal, a layered slice of coconut cake made by Botello’s mom, Janel.

Order: The juicy brisket boudin when it’s available, or the spicy pepper jack smoked sausage. There’s not a trip I’ve made to Truth BBQ without ordering the tater tot casserole.


Rosemeyer Bar-B-Q

2111 Riley Fuzzel Rd., Spring

Rosemeyer’s brisket ready to be sliced and served.

What started as a hobby for friends Jordan Rosemeyer and Ben Maxwell has transformed into a locally beloved barbecue business. The pair shared an interest in barbecue while attending Sam Houston State University and to have some fun, began entering competitions. Their side project quickly became a passion project, and after quitting their jobs, they opened a barbecue trailer near a highway gas station in 2021. The sparse grassy area where their trailer is camped out has a couple of picnic tables for the lucky few who show up early enough. With traffic, it can easily take an hour to get from the city center to this food truck, but Houstonians show up in droves. One bite of Rosemeyer’s fragrant pork ribs glazed in honey syrup, and you’ll see why.

Brisket, generously fatty and redolent of oaky smoke, is doused in chimichurri and served on flour tortillas. Snappy, shimmering jalapeño sausages ooze with molten cheese. Rosemeyer might not be in the middle of town, but it’s a welcome and beloved addition to the city: two Houstonians building on the classic Texas Trinity, learning from one another, and making something wholly unique.

Order: The pork belly burnt ends, known as “meat candy,” in local circles, are exceptionally sweet and flavorful. And don’t miss the challah bread pudding studded with pecans, our state nut.


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Author:Kayla Stewart | Website:www.bonappetit.com

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