Sunday, October 25, 2015

Pecan Lodge in Deep Ellum

What you see in the photo is called The Trough from Pecan Lodge in Deep Ellum. It's described on their menu as "1 beef rib, 1 lb of pork ribs, 1 lb brisket, 1/2 lb of pulled pork and 3 sausage links." It serves 4-5 and costs $75.00 — with tax it's about $82.00.

I ordered this for me and the family (4 of us).

It's the first time I've been to Pecan Lodge. It's been around for a while and a few of my friends have visited without me (bastards!) but I've just never gotten around to checking it out for whatever reason. Finally, I decided this day I would have the intent to go to Pecan Lodge and depending on what the line looked like as I've heard it's always busy and the line is long, I would stop in and order something.

I did look online at the menu before heading that way just to have an idea of their offerings so I wasn't some idiot holding up the line. I wasn't sure what I wanted to get but thought at least the brisket and pork ribs would be good options. I read the description of The Trough but words do not describe well enough what it actually looks like. I did see some photos of it on Yelp which kind of made me lean towards it as it's essentially a sampler of their barbecue offerings.

So let's get to the assessment.
  • Beef rib: It is big. The meat on it is probable the same amount as three of the pork ribs. The outside of the rib (the char, I guess) is way salty. Too salty for my tastes. I did get through it to reach the meat which was very good. The meat was very tender and mostly fell off the bone. After the first little bite, I decided to use a fork or two to scrap the char off and just eat the meat.
  • Pork ribs: One pound of pork ribs isn't a lot, to me anyway. It also doesn't look like a lot and at Pecan Lodge, it's about five ribs. Although seemingly short on quantity, they do not lack in quality. The smoke flavor was good and the tenderness just right. The char was much less and not even close to as salty as the beef rib. These were a hit with the entire family.
  • Brisket: It's pretty tasty. Has a good smoke flavor and very tender. We all enjoyed the brisket very much. I wish there were more than a few slices given.
  • Pulled pork: The pulled pork is pretty good, flavorful and tender like the rest. It has a pretty good crust within the pull parts which added to the flavor. It looks like it was scooped by a spoon and placed in the foil dish but I can overlook that. The family liked it but they liked the brisket and pork ribs better.
  • Sausage link: Out of all the meats, this was the least favorite. It wasn't as flavorful as the others and it tasted just alright. It didn't have the smoky flavor like the other meats. It really just tasted like any other plain sausage I've had at other places or even from the grocery store. I was the only one that ate it and it was the last thing left after the second day. I probably ate it slowly over 3-4 days.
Overall, The Trough was pretty good. Was it worth $82.00? I'm not sure. I mean I'm not a foodie expert but I know what I like and at what cost that I like to pay. That being said, I like the taste and cost of North Main BBQ. However, Pecan Lodge's pork ribs and beef brisket were a couple of notches above North Main BBQ but a little higher cost when I can get North Main as a buffet. Will I try Pecan Lodge again? Yeah, probably at least once more if I'm paying. If I can mooch off a friend, then maybe more than once.

Monday, October 19, 2015

North Main BBQ 10/17/15

North Main BBQ Ribs & Brisket
I visited North Main BBQ this past Saturday. It's been a year or more since the last time I've eaten there and I thought it was time to visit again.

What you see in the image is the slice brisket and pork ribs. I could eat this shit all day! The brisket is still pretty tender and the meat on the ribs pretty much just falls off the bone. After this initial plate, I had a bit of the pulled pork and chopped brisket but then decided to stick with the sliced brisket and pork ribs after.

North Main BBQ still offers sides of cole slaw and baked beans but I consider these as unnecessary. Sure these two things are pretty good if your grilling and barbecuing at home but not if it takes way from my ability to truly eat all I can of the meats available at a restaurant.

What's funny is it's only been a couple of days since I ate there but I can't recall for the life of me how much I paid. It is still a buffet but also offers a sandwich plate. I know I had a twenty dollar bill that I paid with but I can't remember the change I received. I'm sure the buffet costs somewhere between $15 and $18.

I tried to actually pay attention to the tastes and flavoring of the meats this time around. While the meat is tender and flavorful, I did realize that it was pretty salty (for this time) particularly the pork ribs. The sliced brisket wasn't nearly as salty but the crusting of the meats (brisket and ribs) was mainly where the saltiness could be tasted.

Even with the saltiness, I will return to have more barbecue buffet at North Main BBQ. I probably will visit once or twice a year just because but maybe not more than that.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Broken driver side mirror

So the street I live on is bound and determined to make my vehicle-owning life a living hell. First, my CRV was rear ended and then my Grand Caravan driver-side mirror was sideswiped. I don't see other cars on the block or along the street having this problem but it happened to me within a few months time for both my vehicles.

I have a two-car drive way but sometimes my wife's family stops by while I'm at work. I come home and one of my vehicles and an in-laws' vehicle is in my driveway so I have to park my second vehicle at curb of the street. The in-laws leave and I end up leaving my vehicle parked at the curb for whatever reason like laziness or I'm already in bed. Then some idiot comes by and hits my vehicle(s) and doesn't own up to it because they're probably some stupid drunk assholes!

I looked all over the world wide web and local auto parts shops like O'Reilly's or Pep Boys for a cheaply priced replacement mirror. I didn't want to buy from a dealership because of dealership pricing. I almost had to because my particular model seems to be rare for some damn reason. It seems my mirror is in-between the two models that are widely offered from various vendors and dealerships. Either, I can find a replacement manual mirror or mirror with remote and heat. My mirror is remote with no heat. I have no problem having a manual mirror as I hardly adjust my van mirrors but I didn't want to order online and then the damn thing not fit/work like I thought. Then I'd have to go through the process of returning and probably getting screwed out of some of my money that I thought I was saving. Since I couldn't find my particular model on the Internet or in retail auto parts stores and surely didn't want to go to a dealership, I had an epiphany and thought of looking at a junkyard.

Hell, I haven't been to a junkyard in something like twenty five years! I didn't even know if they still existed...for pulling parts, anyway. I figured there were ones around where they just crushed, stacked and stored cars for scrap metal but what the hell do I know these days. I don't work on my own vehicle much at all these days since I'm busy and they have all these new technologies and shit that only "smart mechanics" know how to fix. Anyway, I googled 'junkyard' and found a few in my general vicinity. The closest was about fifteen minutes away. It closed at 6 p.m. and I get off of work at 5 p.m. but with rush-hour traffic happening at that time AND going the direction I'd need to go, I'd have to either leave work early or wait for the weekend. The weekend timing won.

I made my first trip towards the junkyard and got about three quarters of the way before I realized that I did not bring ANY tools for removing the mirror if I found a replacement. I went ahead and drove the rest of the way to know for sure the location and to be sure it actually existed. I mean it did have a website and all but I just wanted to be doubly sure.

It took me a couple of more weeks before I was able to head to the junkyard again. This time I was prepared. I brought the old mirror as well as my tool box of which I really only needed a couple of tools.

I walked all over this junkyard. It was much bigger than I imagined. The area where most of the vehicles that would contain my mirror was the farthest distance in the farthest corner of the junkyard from the entrance. It was a hot, dry day with a slight breeze and this place was very dusty. After about fifteen minutes, my eyes were watering from the dirt, my nose was running from the dust and I think I was getting a farmer's tan from the sunshine.

So long story completed, I finally got my driver-side mirror replaced.

compared to