Aaron Franklin, center, works the serving line while Justin Fourton works his smoker "Lurlene." (Jim Rossman photo)

Friday was a historic night in Dallas barbecue.

The book party for Daniel Vaughn's Prophets of Smoked Meat at the home of Steve and Anne Stodghill brought together four of Texas' best pitmasters: Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue in Austin, Justin Fourton of Pecan Lodge in Dallas, Tim Byres of Smoke in Dallas and Will Fleischman of Lockhart Smokehouse in Dallas.

Steve Stodghill, a principal at the Fish and Richardson law firm, represents Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban.

Daniel Vaughn signing books (@harryhunsicker photo)

The food was great and Vaughn spent much of the night in the Stodghill's dining room signing a mountain of books.

The historic part of the evening, though, was the fact that Franklin served the first briskets he has ever actually cooked in Dallas. A few years ago, he served brisket at a Super Bowl party at the House of Blues, but that was cooked in Austin and brought north.

Beginning Thursday night, Franklin said, he cooked 10 briskets on Fourton's original pit, named Lurlene. To increase capacity, Fourton recently replaced that pit with another, named Virgil, at his Dallas Farmers Market location.

Another historic element of the party: The lines for Franklin barbecue were the shortest they have been since the first day he first opened at his Austin trailer in 2009. In fact, at one time, there was no line.

Franklin was named this week by Texas Monthly as the best BBQ joint in Texas. Pecan Lodge tied for second. Lockhart Smokehouse was in the Top 50. Byres was a featured pitmaster in Vaughn's book. Vaughn is also barbecue editor of Texas Monthly.

Justin Fourton & Aaron Franklin get ready to feed the masses at Daniel Vaughn's book party. (Jim Rossman photo)


11 years ago

Had lunch at Lockhart's today and the feeling there was that someone just showed up and made one little brisket whereas some other un-named pitmasters put out the bulk of the product. I distinctly heard the term "Prima Donna" used in regard to another Dallas pitmaster. Sounds like a little feud between Dallas pitmasters may be brewing. Love a good cat fight. Meow....

bg (red glasses)

Smokin Ronnie Halcomb

11 years ago

Uh oh, there go a catfight.

Austin Top 5 plus Snow's

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