BBQ Road Trips (from Austin, TX)

Like father, like son
If you’ve done Cele Store’s dance floor justice, chances are you’ll still be dizzy the following morning. Not to worry. Your next stop is straight up I-35, 51 miles north of Austin. Take Exit 284, and cross back over the interstate. Just off the West frontage road sits Johnny’s Steaks & Bar-Be-Que in charming Salado, home to great antiquing. Owner Johnny Bratton, who has been in the restaurant business since 1980, opened a barbecue place in nearby Killeen in 1992. His son Josh joined him in opening the Salado location in 2002 after graduating from Texas A&M University. Mesquite-grilled steaks are cut in the kitchen, where everything is made in-house from scratch. Barbecue is smoked with oak and mesquite. I recommend the brisket and the chopped-beef sandwich. Johnny and Josh also run a thriving barbecue-catering business around the state. (They even catered Jenna Bush Hager’s wedding luncheon.) Throw in rustic atmosphere and some down-home hospitality and you’ve got yourself a winner.

Johnny's Steaks & BBQ
Johnny’s Steaks & BBQ


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