Aaron Franklin, right, and his bandmates in Those Peabodys.
(Photo courtesy of Post-Parlo Records)

Please pardon our tardiness, we're a bit late with this post.

Neil Gallagher of Bryan won last month's Texas barbecue giveaway offered by FoodyDirect in partnership with the Posse. FoodyDirect, an online food marketplace, randomly selected his name from among more than 200 entries.

When I contacted Gallagher, 35, to congratulate him, the conversation ranged widely, from his win to even pondering the future of barbecue in Texas.

He said he grew up in Bryan with Aaron Franklin, now the reigning barbecue baron of the state. Franklin runs Franklin Barbecue in Austin.

Gallagher is an accountant at St. Joseph Catholic Church. He said his wife, Jenny, lived next door to the Franklin family in Bryan, where Aaron's father ran a barbecue place.

"I would have never guessed that he was going to be a barbecue mogul," Gallagher said of Franklin. "I always figured that if he was ever going to make it in something, it would be in the music industry. I guess he found something else he loved."

Before barbecue, Franklin played drums for a band called Those Peabodys.

Gallagher said his favorite local spot is Fargo's Pit BBQ in Bryan. "It's good and pretty consistent," he said. He said he started going to Fargo's when it was "just a little old trailer a few miles up the road."

The place has moved over the years, but one thing hasn't changed, pitmaster Alan Caldwell's reluctance to reveal much about his pit and cooking methods. "It's a secret he'll take to his grave," Gallagher said.

Like the Posse, Gallagher doesn't think much of the barbecue available in the Bayou City. "Houston is kind of a black hole for barbecue," he said.

And he worries about the future of Texas barbecue, when the current boom begins to fade.

"It's such a cool thing right now," he said. "But when the lines go away will these people be able to sustain their businesses?"

The food he won in the giveaway? Through FoodyDirect, entrants had a choice among offerings from Kreuz Market and Black's Barbecue in Lockhart, and Snow's BBQ in Lexington. Gallagher picked the "Tootsie" Sampler, including brisket, pork steak and sausage, from Snow's and it was shipped to him.

"We ate on that for a week," he said. "It was great. Every night was barbecue night."

Austin Top 5 plus Snow's

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