You all know that I rant and rave about Phil’s BBQ – and its amazing baby back ribs justify anyone’s love for the San Diego barbecue joint. However, S. and I wondered.. was there anything even better out there? A Yelp search led us to Coop’s West Texas Barbeque in Lemon Grove – pretty far out from where we live, but one day we just decided to go and try it out.
The restaurant is pretty small, about 3 booths and 2 tables total. The menu is simple: pork spareribs, beef brisket, pulled pork, chicken, homemade sausage, and rib tips (Tues/Sat only). You can get a “plate” with 1 to 4 meats and 2 sides, a “container of meat”, or a half or full slab of ribs. There are also sandwiches and desserts available.
Both S. and I ordered 1-meat plates ($12.99 each, but since it was “Payday Thursday” there’s a $2 discount on each plate):
The verdict? It was frickin’ delicious – the smokiness and dry rub were so authentic that I was taken aback at first bite. Both meats were nice and tasty; the brisket, in particular, was very tender. As for the sides, I didn’t care too much for the somewhat bland cole slaw, but I liked the potato salad (had only a small bite, though) and baked beans (sweetened with pineapple – you could even find pineapple chunks!), and the cornbread as well.
I thought the meat was perfectly fine without any sauce, actually, but they also provide barbeque sauce in both a mild and spicy version. I tried the mild and thought that it went well with the meat.
Another wonderfully Texan thing about Coop’s: the sweet tea! It’s actually provided for free, and might I warn the non-Texas/Southern folks that this is very sweet. Probably 50% sugar. And yes, that is how it’s supposed to be done.
Finally, as I already mentioned earlier, there’s Payday Thursday, which is $2 off a “plate combo” every Thursday. They also have Rib Tip Tuesday, which is $8.99 for a pound of rib tips, and Meatlover’s Wednesday, which is $8.99 for a pound of any meat (except beef ribs). So, Thursdays are actually a really good deal! I also want to point out that they give you a lot of meat; plenty for at least 2 full meals for me.
Overall, I really loved my experience here. It was really nice to have real Texas barbeque here, and S. and I have been raving to all our friends that we found a place better than Phil’s! And I know that we will be back for sure.
Coop’s West Texas Barbeque
2625 Lemon Grove Ave., Lemon Grove, CA
*Note: Hours updated as of 2012/3/25.