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Pecan Lodge is just one of those places that people recommend for barbecue in Dallas.
Because I live in Southwest Missouri, when I think of barbecue, the first city that pops into mind is Kansas City. Memphis is a close second. But one can’t ignore one of the best contenders for amazing brisket and ribs, a place known for cowboys and cattle drives–Texas.
Jeff and I had never experienced Texas barbecue together, so when we took a quick road trip to Dallas, we knew what we had to do. After researching and debating several great prospects, we decided to go with Pecan Lodge. Located in Dallas’s arts district of Deep Ellum, Pecan Lodge fits in well as a fun place to eat while exploring the area. If that wasn’t enough, the barbecue at Pecan Lodge is worth the trek. It’s absolutely delicious.
Deep Ellum is a neighborhood located east of downtown Dallas, Texas. Its history dates back to the late 19th century when it was first developed as a commercial and industrial district. The area was initially known as Deep Elm due to the large number of elm trees that grew there.
In the early 1900s, Deep Ellum became a thriving center for African American and immigrant communities. The neighborhood attracted musicians, artists, and entrepreneurs, making it a vibrant cultural hub. African American musicians, in particular, played a significant role in the development of Deep Ellum’s music scene, contributing to the rise of jazz and blues in the area.
During the Prohibition era in the 1920s, Deep Ellum became known for its numerous speakeasies and illegal alcohol establishments. This further fueled the neighborhood’s reputation for its lively nightlife.
In the 1930s, the Great Depression hit Deep Ellum hard. Many businesses closed down, and the area suffered from economic decline. However, the neighborhood experienced a revival during World War II when defense industries brought jobs and prosperity back to the area.
In the mid-20th century, Deep Ellum continued to flourish as a hub for music and entertainment. It became a hotspot for various genres, including blues, jazz, gospel, and later rock and roll. Legendary musicians such as Blind Lemon Jefferson, Lead Belly, and Robert Johnson performed in the neighborhood’s clubs and venues.
However, by the 1960s, Deep Ellum began to face challenges. Urban renewal projects and the construction of highways led to the demolition of several buildings, displacing residents and businesses. The neighborhood’s decline continued throughout the 1970s and 1980s, as crime rates rose and many establishments closed down.
In the 1990s, Deep Ellum experienced a revitalization as artists, musicians, and entrepreneurs began to reclaim the area. The neighborhood once again became a cultural and entertainment destination, with numerous music venues, art galleries, restaurants, and shops opening up. If you’re a Nirvana fan, you know they played here. If you read Dave Grohl’s memoir, you’ll appreciate his first-hand experience in Deep Ellum. I lived in Dallas for a year in 1995, and Deep Ellum was a place of mystery and fear for me; I’d heard stories that made me question how safe I’d be there.
Today, Deep Ellum is known for its vibrant nightlife, street art, live music scene, and diverse culinary offerings. It continues to attract both locals and tourists, preserving its rich history while embracing new developments and cultural influences. During our daytime visit on a Sunday, I didn’t feel unsafe at all.
Pecan Lodge is a popular restaurant known for its authentic Texas-style barbecue, and it has gained national recognition as one of the best barbecue spots in the country.
The restaurant was founded in 2010 by Justin and Diane Fourton, who wanted to share their love for barbecue with the community. Pecan Lodge started as a small food stall at the Dallas Farmers Market and quickly gained a loyal following for its delicious smoked meats and homemade sides.
In 2014, Pecan Lodge moved to its larger location in Deep Ellum, allowing them to accommodate more customers and expand their menu. The restaurant offers a variety of smoked meats, including brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and sausage, all cooked low and slow over pecan wood. Not gonna lie, I was most interested in trying a beef rib for the first time.
The popularity of Pecan Lodge has led to long lines and wait times, especially during peak hours. However, many customers believe that the delicious food is well worth the wait. We arrived at opening, so we had very little wait. Once we left, however, the line was out the door.
The restaurant also offers online ordering and catering services.
Pecan Lodge has an outdoor seating space, but it was still a little cool when we made our spring visit. We opted to stay inside.
The dine-in option is similar to many barbecue joints that we’ve visited. Here, you follow the line to the counter to place your order. After you pay, you can grab your drinks and find a table. When your order is ready, you’ll be called back up to the counter to pick up your food.
Gotta read the praise on the wall while you wait in line.
You can also pick up your Pecan Lodge merch if you’re so inclined.
The menu is on the chalkboard behind the counter.
We each got two-meat combo plates that come with one side. If you know Jeff, you know he’s a tad picky and wasn’t really into those. I picked both sides to try.
I had brisket and pork ribs with coleslaw. The meat melted in your mouth! I don’t remember liking or disliking the coleslaw. I know I didn’t take it home.
Jeff had the same meats, and then I chose mac and cheese for him so I could try it. This side was awesome! It has a little kick to it, and yes, I did take that home. The green chilis and bacon make it a memorable side.
We also got a beef rib to share. It’s a tad pricey, but this was a special occasion that warranted a dining splurge. I mean, the special occasion was trying Texas barbecue together, so we had to try a beef rib, right?
By the way, beef ribs are enormous.
Here’s a close-up of the brisket and beef rib. Yummy!
Everything was simply amazing, including the beef rib.
Our experience at Pecan Lodge was fantastic! The meats were some of the juiciest we’d ever had, and we’ve eaten plenty of Kansas City barbecue as well as barbecue from around the country. We also can’t wait to try other highly-rated barbecue restaurants in Dallas since this one was such a hit. If you’re wondering if you should give Pecan Lodge a try, I would say, absolutely!
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