Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ – South Austin’s Best

This BBQ lover continues to be impressed by Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ located on Manchaca in South Austin. Pitmaster Miguel Vidal and his team consistently deliver amazing smoky brisket, spicy sausage, best in class pork ribs and a nice range of signatures side items. Took my friends Sean Finnegan & Ginger Sofia recently and it made for a truly memorable lunch. We are not the only ones taking notice. They were included in the last Texas Monthly Top 50 and was featured two weeks ago on Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives. It’s a destination BBQ joint. Go hungry!

Welcoming Inman’s BBQ to Texas Top 20

Made my second visit to Inman’s Kitchen BBQ in Llano. Again I was warmly greeted by Texas Pitmaster Grant Morgan. They recently remodeled the restaurant and it looks awesome. But still stays to it’s small town roots as friendly & casual BBQ joint. Everything was just right. Tasty mesquite smoked moist brisket, incredible & lean turkey sausage, homemade bread & the best cole slaw I’ve ever had(except my mother-in-laws). Pitmaster Grant Morgan, his wife Kayla & the rest of their team in Llano treats you like family. We are proud to add Inman’s to our Texas Top 20 Favorites list. Inman’s in my humble opinion is not only the best BBQ in Llano but one of the very best in Texas. Can’t wait to our next visit.

Inman’s BBQ in Llano – Home of Turkey Sausage

Met Texas Pitmaster Grant Morgan I spent Saturday afternoon checking out all three BBQ joints in Llano. Coopers, Laird’s & Inman’s. At Inman’s I got a warm, small town Texas welcome and a  VIP pit tour from Grant & his wife Kayla. They took over 2 years ago the business his grandparents opened in 1967. My mesquite smoked, moist brisket, cole slaw, beans & home made bread were spot on. He also let me sample his jalapeño turkey sausage – super lean, super tasty. I’m hooked on it now. Check em out next time you’re in Llano. Tell ’em Sheehan sent you. And remember, life’s too short to eat bad brisket.

Kenneth Laird – Texas BBQ Hero

Meet my new friend pitmaster Kenneth Laird. Kenneth & his wife Esther have owned Laird’s “Real Texas” BBQ in Llano for 46 years. He’s originally from San Saba TX. He served me up a tasty slice of moist, mesquite smoked brisket & some amazing beans. They don’t take credit cards so I wrote him a check, yes a $5 check. He offered to give me my lunch for free. Kenneth also proudly served in the army in Vietnam. He has 22 pieces of shrapnel in him to remember his time serving our country. Fellas like Kenneth make me so proud to be an American & why I love being on the TX BBQ trail in little Texas towns like Llano. Drop by Laird’s next time you are in Llano, tell him Sheehan sent ya.

Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ – South Austin’s Best

Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ is South Austin’s best BBQ. Owner Miguel Vidal is an accomplished pitmaster who has spent much of his life working in the restaurant & BBQ business. Last week’s visit had us sampling perfectly smoky brisket, spicy jalapeno cheddar sausage & tender pork ribs. Each of these three meats were simply perfect. It’s no wonder they were recently recognized as one of Texas Monthly’s Top 50. We are so impressed they’re going in our Texas BBQ Trail Top 10. I love that Miguel named his BBQ joint after his daughter Valentina.

Creekside Cookers BBQ – Head of the Class

We’re excited to welcome Creekside Cookers BBQ to the Sheehan Can Texas BBQ Trail Top 20. Kelly & his wife Melody are both full time teachers. Kelly teaches 6th grade world history & Melody is a reading specialist. But on Saturdays they sell about 400 lbs of perfect BBQ on RR 12 in Wimberley. They use pecan wood and slow smoke brisket, pork ribs, sausage, chicken, pulled pork with amazing sides too. The brisket and pork ribs get an 11 score on a 10 point scale. The cole slaw, corn soufflé & peach cobbler topped off an amazing meal on my latest Texas BBQ run. Teachers and pitmasters are some of the hardest working people I know. This dynamic duo of Kelly & Melody happen to be both. Another teacher friend, Paul Dixon works with them as well. Do yourself a favor and head down RR 12 South to Wimberley on a Saturday morning to check out their great Q — but get their early by 10:30 – 11:00am. They sell out fast!!


Stiles Switch BBQ – Texas’ #1 BBQ Joint

Thank God It’s Friday – BBQ Time, had an amazing lunch with 9 yr. army veteran & Merrill Lynch advisor Cory Boyles. Cory had perfectly smoky moist brisket, corn casserole & Mac Cheese. I had awesome turkey, coleslaw & cucumber salad. Our pitmaster buddies Lance Kirkpatrick & Bill Dumas gave us the VIP pit tour. Stiles Switch is now my #1 favorite BBQ joint in Texas. They consistently smoke great Q and their sides are fresh & super tasty. I love that they have 4 pits going most all of the time. They don’t plan on selling out. It takes a lot of dedication and hard work. Every time I take friends there they are blown away by the perfectly smoky moist brisket, tasty sausage, pork ribs,  their amazing big beef ribs. Keep up the great work boys!!


Smitty’s BBQ Lockhart – Old School BBQ

Smitty’s BBQ in Lockhart is probably the coolest BBQ joint in Texas. It’s an old meat market which hasn’t changed much through the years. They serve up great BBQ – sausage links, smoked brisket, pork ribs with many tasty sides as well. As you walk in you see dark black walls, from the years of smoke and a number of open fires fueling their pits. This was the original location as well for Kreuz market before they “carried their fire” with them to their new location in Lockhart. Lockhart is known as the BBQ Capital of Texas. It’s rightly named as they have 4 excellent BBQ joints – Smitty’s, Kreuz, Black’s & Chisholm Trail. Taking good pictures for my blog takes some work too. 15203334_787642554709358_6633819551821036722_n15095436_779146682225612_4164374314320514373_n15241886_787642331376047_3634995946204778454_nunknown

Brown’s BBQ – Austin..some of the smokiest brisket you’ll find

We love Brown’s BBQ in Austin. They have a BBQ food trailer located on S. Lamar. Thanks to my BBQ buddy John Kaechle for introducing me to Brown’s. Another Texas BBQ family operation, Daniel Brown knows how to slow smoke a beef brisket to perfection. The moist brisket we had was truly incredible. So go check them out…and take home some for your family and friends.




Freedmen’s BBQ — Great BBQ on UT West Campus – Austin

I was blown away with the perfectly smoked BBQ at Freedmen’s – Austin. Located on 24th & San Grabriel, pitmaster Evan Leroy is slow smoking some of the best Q in town. This is a must visit place…check out their great selection of premium bourbons & whiskeys too. Call a taxi if necessary.



It’s All Good BBQ – Spicewood…for perfectly smoky, moist brisket

BBQ times are best enjoyed with family & friends. It’s All Good in Spicewood is a great Hill Country BBQ destination. The brisket today is perfectly moist & smoky because pitmaster Frankie Hoch is the real deal. The consistently put out a great product.


Jack’s BBQ – A Smith Family Tradition

Meet 3rd generation pitmaster Jack Smith, wife Sylvia and sons Daniel & Dewayne. His granddad Jack Smith and Dad Jack Smith have been smoking tasty brisket, sausage and ribs since 1955. The BBQ I enjoyed today was slow smoked over red oak and was super smoky, moist and tasty. What a nice treat here in Cut ‘N Shoot near Cleveland. They are located at 17560 105 East, Cut N Shoot 77306, phone 936-445-1372 See picture of their restaurant now and trailer they started in 2004. We love the tradition of small town Texas family BBQ…the Smith’s know how to do it right.





Texas BBQ Trail Top 20 – Can You Name All 5?

How many of these 5 Texas BBQ legends can you name?



Tootsie Best




Texas BBQ Sides – Do They Really Matter?

Do BBQ sides really matter? If you have a favorite side from a Texas BBQ joint I want to know. Here is one that will stick to your ribs. Tator tot casserole. Bread, beans, creamy cole slaw, vinegar based cole slaw, potato salad, corn casserole, mac n cheese, squash, roasted corn, jalapeno corn, green beans…the list goes on. While the meat is most always the main attraction, perfectly prepared from scratch sides are also popular. The best BBQ joints have their own signature sides.


BBQ & Beer @ Infamous Brewing: Come Visit Us

BBQ & Beer is a great way to bring friends together. Here in Lake Travis we meet monthly at Infamous Brewing for relaxed networking. This group is called GAP (Greater Austin Professionals) and we meet the 2nd Tuesday every month from 6-8pm. In May, we had a blast by including Schmidt Family BBQ – Bee Cave pitmasters Chad Franks, Jeremy Smith & Troy Warlick. They smoked a perfect brisket for everyone to sample and also shared Central Texas BBQ tips. Tips included how to buy a smoker, the right wood, how to buy a brisket, fire management, how to prep and slice a brisket. A great time was had by all. If you want to become a better backyard pitmaster, check out Schmidt Family BBQ’s Smoke 101 class offered every 1-2 months and co-sponsored by Infamous Bewing with my buddy Josh Horowitz. Call David at 512-751-3080 to find out more details.






Top Chef – I’ll Still Call Aaron Franklin Pitmaster

Texas BBQ Pitmaster legend Aaron Franklin just won the best chef in the Southwest, James Beard Award. This is a huge honor and signifies how much Aaron has done for Texas BBQ. The message the award sent. “It is a monumental shift for the culinary world to recognize barbecue like this.” He beat out many notable top chefs. But in my book, the title pitmaster is a top honor in of itself. Texas pitmasters put so much work and long hours into slow smoking tasty beef brisket, sausage, pork ribs and beef ribs. Aaron has clearly elevated the BBQ playing field and in doing so made Austin the #1 BBQ city in the USA, even beating out Memphis and Lockhart. His attention to detail, daily preparation and planning and approach to BBQ as part art and part science has led him to smoke some of the very best Q you’ll find anywhere. Franklin’s BBQ is consistently top notch. Personally, I do enjoy Franklin’s BBQ despite the line. You get to smell that smoke, anticipate for hours that moist brisket and in doing so meet some cool folks from all around the world on that line. I can also highly recommend his book.





BBQ, Blues & Brew – Smokey Denmark’s BBQ @ Infamous

Great time last night at Infamous Brewing with my brewmaster buddy Josh Horowitz. Josh hosted Smokey Denmark’s pitmaster extraordinaire Bill Dumas and local blues favorite Ru Coleman. Check out Infamous Brewery off 620 & Husdon Bend. Bill smoked some great brisket, tasty sausage and offered his specialty “Double Oinker” pulled pork / sausage sandwich which was a big hit by all. Highly recommend you check out Smokey Denmark’s in Austin on East 5th. Drop by to hear Ru Coleman who is a mainstay at Poodie’s Roadhouse in Spicewood on Hwy. 71

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Texas Sized Beef Ribs…from Lance at Stiles Switch

Just love enjoying on special occasions a Texas Sized Beef Rib from my pitmaster buddy Lance Kirkpatrick at Stiles Switch BBQ & Brew in Austin. They are conveniently located on 6600 North Lamar in Austin. Lance got his start at Louie Mueller BBQ in Taylor. Taylor is a legendary BBQ town and it is a big deal we have such a great BBQ joint here in Austin. They do all their smoking the old school way. Low and slow over post oak. Beyond their beef ribs I also give top scores on their smoky brisket, jalapeno cheese sausage, pork ribs, cole slaw and their signature side — corn casserole. Drop by for small town Texas BBQ in not so small Austin.



Smoke 101 – Schmidt Family BBQ in Bee Cave

OK BBQ lovers…we all love to eat the good stuff. But most of us have no idea how to slow smoke a perfect Texas Brisket. Schmidt Family BBQ in Bee Cave with pitmasters Chad Franks & Jeremy Smith are giving you an opportunity to eat some great Q, enjoy a cold Infamous brew and learn from the pros. You’ll learn the history of Central Texas BBQ, how to pick the right brisket, how to season, what wood to use, how to smoke and even how to slice a Texas brisket. Gonna be big fun! See you November 11th in Bee Cave.


It’s All Good BBQ in Spicewood – Home of The Pedernales Pit

It’s All Good BBQ in Spicewood is one of my Texas favorites. Pitmaster Frankie Hoch slows smokes his briskets to melt in your mouth perfection. Just the right amount of smoke and bark with remarkable consistency. Great consistency & quality is not so easy to find. This place truly lives up to its name. They even got an unannounced visit from the Texas Monthly BBQ crew recently. To no surprise they had words of high praise. Our family and friends love the Spicewood area because its also right next to Poodie’s Hilltop Saloon and Dancehall. Recently It’s All Good hosted a customer appreciation event with my favorite Austin area Honky-Tonk group Them Duqaines. Good times! 1011675_352422328231385_2106874201_n 10525399_437886953018255_4468773008707953167_o



The Ultimate BBQ Treat – Smoked Prime Rib

I’m all about keeping to the basics when it comes to great Texas BBQ. Just love tasty smoked brisket & sausage with all the fixins. But I tried Schmidt Family BBQ’s smoked prime rib the other night and was blown away. It was perfectly seasoned, had just the right amount smoke and the most incredible flavor. Good news is that you can try it too. Served on weekends. Say hi to my friends and clients Chad Franks and Susie – Schmidt Franks. And don’t forget to try their Spicy Mac N Cheese.


It’s All Good – A BBQ Joint That Lives Up To Its Name

Pitmaster Frankie Hoch was born in Hallettsville, Texas. Don’t know Halletsville?  Well it’s the home of the Texas Fiddle Championship – Fiddlers Frolick. Frankie largely taught himself how to BBQ. Lots of practice and years of experience allows him to know how to perfectly slow smoke some of the tastiest BBQ brisket in all of Texas(right on Hwy. 71 in Spicewood near Poodie’s Hilltop Saloon –  which serves up great old school C&W). He slow smokes his briskets around 13 hours over post oak. It has just the right amount of smoky flavor and a nice bark. I recommend their moist brisket. Their jalapeno sausage and homemade sides are so tasty too. Another words,  It’s Really All Good.  They rightfully deserve a Top 20 spot on any Texas BBQ list. Spicewood is also home to RO’s Outpost BBQ and Opie’s BBQ.








Dang…Sold Out…Again

Went to John Mueller’s BBQ at 2500 E  5th in Austin today – 2:30PM on a Saturday. But darn — they were SOLD OUT! Ever wonder why the best BBQ spots tend to always sell out? Great Q is served fresh and hot. So the smart pitmasters only cook what they can sell fast. Meat costs are also high and unsold BBQ can sour a BBQ joints bottom line. And of course “Sold Out” are powerful words that shout “Get Here Early While The Gettins Good”. Franklins BBQ  is the master of this marketing approach but the really good spots like Snow’s – Lexington, Louie Mueller BBQ – Taylor, John Mueller BBQ – Austin and City Market -Luling often run out too.

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Snow’s BBQ Lexington — The Real Deal

No hype here – Snow’s BBQ in Lexington is the real deal. Rightfully earning one of our top 2 spots on my Texas Best BBQ Top 20. Pitmasters Tootsie Tomanetz and Kerry Bexley and the whole Snows BBQ crew treated us like family. Tootsie told me she learned much about BBQ growing up in Lexington from an old man named Orange Holloway. Every BBQ meat was cooked to absolute perfection – awesome post oak smoked brisket, lean jalapeno sausage, fall off the bone chicken, tender pork ribs and not so common BBQ pork shoulder. Their potato salad is almost German style and the beans are tasty and all you can eat. The early morning drive was well worth it as my son Austin made the drive with me. Snow’s is only open on Saturday and they sell out by 10:30AM. It is worth the drive from anywhere. They work fulltime jobs during the week — Tootsie as custodian at Giddings Elementary and Kerry works as controller as Alcoa plant in Rockdale.

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God Bless Moore OK- Operation BBQ

We had a great day on Saturday, June 8th in Moore OK. We served Texas Best BBQ from Clark’s Outpost in Tioga, TX to more than 350 tired and still shell shocked folks in Moore OK. Pitmaster James Hilliard did all the cooking and the brisket, sausage, beans, chips & homemade cookies were awesome. 578082_253439631462989_1251706720_n 179129_249620791844873_1561518275_n 945587_256521931154759_468733023_n 74115_199649676841985_655466654_n 946563_608415379169631_1646408117_n

BBQ Heaven — Headin’ To Lockhart

Finally Friday! Time for a Texas Best BBQ run. Heading to BBQ Heaven — Lockhart (the official and well deserved BBQ Capital of Texas…and the world). My buddy Chris Dregits and I will check out the slow smoked brisket and spicy sausage at Kreuz, Black’s, Smitty’s and Chisholm Trail. May need to wear that larger belt today?SheenhanTX trail

Miller’s BBQ Belton – Tasty Old School Q

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Here’s our Sheehan Can Roadmap.

Lost? Just follow the smoke…


  1. Clark’s Outpost – Tioga, 940-437-2414 (PM James Hilliard)
  2. Black’s BBQ – Lockhart, 512.398.2712 (PM Kent Black)
  3. Kreuz BBQ – Lockhart, 512-398-2361 (PM Roy Perez)
  4. City Market – Luling, 830-875-9019 (PM Joe Capello)
  5. Franklin’s BBQ – Austin 512-653-1187 (PM Aaron Franklin)
  6. Miller’s BBQ – Belton 254-939-5500 (PM Dirk Miller)
  7. Salt Lick – Driftwood, 512-858-4959 (PM Scott Roberts)
  8. Louie Mueller – Taylor, 512-352-6206 (PM Wayne Mueller)
  9. Smitty’s – Lockhart, 512-398-9344, (PM John A. Fullilove)
  10. Southside Market – Elgin, 512-281-4650
  11. It’s All Good BBQ – Spicewood 512-264-1744 (PM Frankie Hoch)
  12. Chisholm Trl – Lockhart, 512-398-6027 (PM Floyd Wilhelm)
  13. Buster’s BBQ – Lakeway 512-263-2340 (PM Mary)
  14. Stubb’s BBQ – Austin, 512-480-8341
  15. Snow’s BBQ – Lexington, 979-773-4640 (PM Kerry and Ms. Tootsie Tomanetz, open Saturday Only)
  16. County Line – Austin, 512-327-1742 (Order The Beef Rib)
  17. Joe Cotton’s – Corpus Christi, 361-933-0143
  18. Sonny Bryan’s BBQ – Dallas 214-357-7120
  19. Zimmerhanzel’s – Smithville, 512-237-4244
  20. Meyer’s BBQ – Elgin 512-281-3331