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My Favorite Texas-Style Barbecue Trays of 2023

Gonzo’s Smokehouse

Luling, Louisiana

To try all the barbecue, you’ve gotta show up early on a Friday to Gonzo’s Smokehouse. Owner Jason Gonzalez serves a truncated menu of brisket burgers and barbecue tacos on Thursdays, but Friday is when the crowds line up in tiny Luling, Louisiana, west of New Orleans. They’re hoping to get the smoked boudin studded with chunks of brisket or the trio of brisket, beef belly, and pork belly burnt ends. The simple smoked brisket is impressive, but smoked pork jowls are the showstopper. They’re cooked so long and slow that the fat becomes tacky and sweet, flavoring the tender, smoky pork in every bite.

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