Here's why I went to Luling. The City Market has been smoking meats since the 1930s. It is one of the holy of holies of Texas BBQ. They cook three things: beef brisket, pork ribs and beef sausage. To order you go into the pit room at the back of the market. Make sure the door closes behind you. As I was eating someone in line did not and she was informed in a manner that left no doubt that the door should be closed.
Once inside the pit master takes your order, cuts the meat, puts it on butcher paper, and rings you up on a cash register protected by a plastic cover that is blackened with smoke and worn through at the more popular buttons. Back in the dining area I picked up the plastic utensils and a Big Red soda.
Brisket isn't a cut of meat I'd normally get but in the interests of science I gave it a try. I mean, when am I returning to Luling? The brisket was really good. I made a little sandwich out of it and the house-made orange bbq sauce. The ribs, hiding underneat the brisket, were outstanding. Outstanding as in, wow, way more tasty than any ribs I've ever eaten. The homemade sausage? Let's just say I could have happily sat there eating sausage until the cows came home, at which point more sausage could have been made and the cycle could continue.
Having consumed more than my fair share of protein, I headed out into the sunshine to see what else Luling offered.