100 Favorite Dishes, No. 44: The Brisket at Pecan Lodge

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Right up front there is the best brisket you can get in Dallas.
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

Pecan Lodge has really become an anchor for the Dallas barbecue scene in the past few years. You could point to all the publicity and drama surrounding their untimely move from the Dallas Farmers Market to Deep Ellum, but the real reason everyone has been talking about the place are those brisket slices front and center in the picture above.

Customers in the know always ask for the fatty cuts, cardiovascular health be damned. The fat renders down into a tender, melt-in-your-mouth consistency and adds a ton of moisture and flavor to every bite. Get a side of mac and cheese to play a backup roll and you'll living about as decadently as you can.

What's even better is how much more fun the restaurant is with the new digs. Pecan Lodge feels more at home in Deep Ellum than it ever did in the Farmers Market. They even brought the notoriously long line, but now there's more smokers turning out stellar brisket so the line moves faster, and there are more tables, inside and outside for seating.

Pecan Lodge, Deep Ellum edition has longer hours for extended brisket dining, and the have bands on the patio, so you can blow out your eardrums while you bury your face in a hot mess. And sweet, sweet, Jesus, most important of all they have beer. And beer and brisket are delicious.

No. 100: Pastrami Egg Rolls at Blind Butcher
No. 99: Chicken-fried Steak at Tom's Burgers and Grill
No. 98: Pasta with Uni Butter at Nonna
No. 97: Camarón en Agua Chile at La Palapas
No. 96: The Wings at Lakewood Landing
No. 94: Chicken Kebab at Afrah
No. 93: Trompo Tacos at Bachman Lake
No. 92: Fish and Chips at 20 Feet
No. 91: Canelés at Village Baking Co.
No. 90: Banh Mi from La Me
No. 88: The Burgers at Off-Site Kitchen
No. 87: The White Album at Spoon
No. 86: Ramen at Tei An
No. 85: Tacos at Revolver Taco
No. 84: Stuffed Chicken Wings at Sakhuu
No. 83: Korean Fried Chicken at Bonchon
No. 82: Grilled Branzino at Tei Tei Robata
No. 81: The Toddfather at Cattleack Barbecue
No. 80: The Biryanis at Chennai
No. 79: Shish Tawook at Qariah
No. 78: Arepes at Zaguan
No. 77: Goat Momo at Everest Restaurant
No. 76: Steak Tartar at Gemma
No. 75: Escabeche at Joyce and Gigi's
No. 74: Spicy Fish in Oil at Royal Sichuan
No. 73: Pupusas at La Pasadita
No. 72: The Kathi Roll at Simply Dosa
No. 71: The Chicken Wings at Teppo
No. 70: Cheesesteak at Truck Yard
No. 69: Chicken and Waffles at Jonathon's
No. 68: Birria Tacos at Los Torres Taqueria
No. 67: Bulgogi Cheesesteak at Say Kimchi
No. 66: Suadero Tacos at La Banqueta
No. 65: Brian Luscher's Post Oak Red Hot
No. 64: Banana Flower Salad at Mot Hai Ba
No. 63: Cinco Leches Cake At Mesero Miguel
No. 62: Cabrito a la Parilla at El Ranchito
No. 61: Reuben at Kuby's
No. 60: Plain Cheese Pizza Cooked Extra Crispy at Zoli's
No. 59: Enmoladas at Mesa
No. 58: Pig's Head at CBD Provisions
No. 57: Rib "Sandwich" at Baby Back Shak
No. 56: Beef Noodle Soup at Monkey King
No. 55: The Nachos at Spiral Diner
No. 54: Elotes, Everywhere
No. 53: The Popeye At Green Grocer
No. 52: The Cuban at International Bakery
No. 51: Rush Patisserie's Croissant
No. 50: Kitfo From Sheba's Ethiopian Kitchen
No. 49: Beer at Craft and Growler
No. 48: Pastor Tacos at El Rincon
No. 47: Banh Mi From Nammi
No. 46: Beef Fajitas From Mariano's
No. 45: Italian Combo from Carbone's

Location Info

Pecan Lodge

2702 Main St., Dallas, TX

Category: Restaurant

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When we went there in June, we waited more than an hour for barely edible, fatty brisket. Such a disappointment after all the hype. We took the meat back to the window to show the guy. He gave us some additional, supposedly, leaner meat, but it wasn't much better. Maybe it was an off day. We went to Franklin's and waited more than two hours, but it was absolutely worth the wait. Got to try Slowbone next.

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

The line moves faster?  I cant imagine how slow it was before.  I've been twice to the new place and both times lines were to the corner of  Main and Pryor and it took over an hour to get to the register.  I love the Q but that wait is too much, and I cant get enough people to go in on a trough with me to skip the line

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@Really Luck of the draw man, give it another shot, I had the some issue with my brisket at TSB but Im giving them another shot.  And fatty brisket is awesome btw


@ScottsMerkin They have 4 or more smokers. Yes. It is faster. But worth an hour wait IMO, and I think the brisket should be higher up on the list (unless Mr. Reitz is saving a place for their beef rib.). Have you ever been to Franklin's? Its a lot longer than an hour. But if you can't wait, I suppose there is always Dickey's.

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@OxbowIncident yeah Dickey's that is what Im looking for SMMFH.  Jesus, I like, no I love Pecan Lodge but I can still bitch about the wait.   Ive never been to Franklins but Ive been around enough good bbq being that I have lived in 2 great bbq states, that Im really not into putting in 2-3 hrs in line to eat.  Hell,  my buddies and I smoke some top notch briskets at home about once a month 


@OxbowIncident  To hell with Dickeys, go see good ol' Jack at the Slowbone at 11am sharp and you'll walk right in and be eating by 11:03.


@ScottsMerkin @OxbowIncident If you're going to spend 70 bucks, which is easy to do with 4 people, get the Trough at Pecan Lodge. You go straight to the front of the line for that. The original Dickey's on Central Expressway was a mainstay when I was a child. But when they went super-corporate, franchised, and compromised their ingredients, they got real bad real fast. I like Slow Bone good enough. In fact I think he has the best barbecue sauce I ever had that was not my own.I have heard Hard 8 is really good too but I can't make the drive out there without getting some sort of a nosebleed.

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@Joshstruckoutagain @OxbowIncident I like how bbq snobs always throw Dickey's out there when bagging on other peoples comments about their favorite bbq place.  Im like, bitch, 5 years ago there wasnt much but Dickey's around DFW and you know your parents fed you that shit since you were a kid.  Thank god, growing up in Kansas we didnt have Dickey's, we had Gates but sadly Gates really is no more than a glorified Dickey's these days

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@OxbowIncident I talked about the trough, but I need 3 other bbq obsessed folks who are willing to shell out $20 for bbq to go with me, and I cant pull that together in my little office group


@ScottsMerkin @Joshstruckoutagain @OxbowIncident was gates even in Kansas when you were a kid? They have I think 2 kansas locations now, but not sure how long theyve been there. And I honestly have no clue how you can ever compare gates and dickeys.  Gates is at worst #2 in the KC area with Okie joes. btw pecan lodge would fit in just fine in the kc bbq scene. 


@ScottsMerkin @Joshstruckoutagain @OxbowIncident  I've eaten more than my share of Risky's over here at multiple locations in the Fort..very similar to Dickeys...and didn't mind..til I had quality Q in Lockhart at Smitty's and Blacks..and then at Franklins, haven't made it to Pecan Lodge or Lockharts but have been to Slow Bone multiple trips and they are doing high quality Q over there.

I too, am now, a BBQ snob and I'll be fine if'n I don't have another dried out slice o brisket from Dickeys or Ricskys.

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@djmilus @ScottsMerkin @Joshstruckoutagain @OxbowIncident The comparison was tongue in cheek in a sense because there is so much better bbq out there now, but its all personal choice.  No harm in putting Gates on your good list.  It was 90 when I we moved here and Im fairly certain there was one on the KS side.  Gates for Nostalgia, Okie Joes is top notch, Jack Stack over in Martin City was good too.  And yeah, when my extended Kansas fam comes to visit they are getting Pecan Lodge Lockhart TSB tour

ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@CitizenKane @ScottsMerkin @Joshstruckoutagain @OxbowIncident nah been here for 24, but you cant tell me the bbq craze that exists now was here 5 years ago.  Was I exaggerating on only Dickey's sure, but it wasnt far off.  There are some great small bbq joints that have been around a long time but get no love in the press unlike Pecan, Lockhart and TSB.  There are some great ribs at a little shack on the corner of Collins and Arkansas in Arlington and David's on Park Row was slanging great brisket for a loooong time

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