Just as Tex Mex is an appropriate meal in Texas, even more so is BBQ. For our second outing in Austin, Joel and I chose Lambert’s Downtown BBQ. This, like our previous meal, was to be a modern take on traditional Texas food.
Now, having lived in the south for a good part of my life, BBQ has a special place in my heart and Lambert’s fit right in. The restaurant was quite busy upon arrival as it was Monday night football (football being a MAJOR part of Southern tradition). However, we were seated right away as per our reservation, in a large table for two.
We each started with Lambert’s beer of the week — this week it was a German Dunkel Weiss. For food, we went straight for the good stuff: the spicy Roasted Green Chili Queso and chips. For our entrées I got the Maple and Coriander Crusted Country Style Pork Ribs while Joel went for the Brown Sugar and Coffee Rubbed Natural Beef Brisket. We ordered a side of the Lambert’s Baked Mac and Cheese as well as the Green Chili Cheese Grits.
My pork ribs were heavenly. They were so moist and juicy the meat peeled right from the bone, a sure sign of a good BBQ pit master. The maple coriander crust was sweet, but not overpowering against the salty pork. Joel’s brisket was delicious as well. It, too, was very tender and seasoned well with a sweet, crispy crust. And, when topped with the house made BBQ sauce — it made for a superb modern take on traditional brisket. The side of green chili grits went fast between the two of us being that it was the perfect balance of cheesy and spicy.
As you all may know, I am a harsh mac and cheese critic — so if it’s on a menu, I will try it. Lucky for me, Lambert’s had their own version which had amazing reviews by others online. I’m here to say otherwise. Lambert’s mac and cheese was made with blue cheese and those familiar with blue cheese know how powerful it’s flavor is. The blue cheese made Lambert’s mac and cheese hard to eat, it was overpowering. Aside from the strong blue cheese, the gigantic elbow macaroni they used were mushy. Not a favorite pick of mine.
Lambert’s modern take on Southern BBQ was a good try. They have a wide selection, great ambiance and good service.