Austin, TX– So we landed a little after 8 pm and we landed hungry. In an attempt to make the best use of our time here we looked for BBQ joints open late. It came down to two, Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ and The Blue Ox. Due to location we chose The Blue Ox and we were not disappointed. Located behind BuzzMill Coffee, this food truck has plenty to offer including a patio area equipped with a bonfire, live music, and a dog friendly environment. Caution: the dogs will eat your barbecue so be on alert.
There was no wait when we got there around 10 pm. A folk group was performing and people were crowded around the bonfire with food and coffee. So yeah that’s cute but let’s get to the barbecue.
At $6 a piece the sandwiches were a steal and pretty stacked. You can customize them based on how you want the meat cut and with whatever toppings you’re into. I got the brisket sliced with their purple slaw then added pickles and BBQ sauce myself at their toppings bar. It was pretty cold out so I had to eat it quick but the meat was tender and the rub/bark around the meat was definitely well executed. Again, the only downfall was the temperature, it wasn’t as hot as I would’ve liked BUT the weather was mostly to blame for that.
Robbie went with the pulled pork (as usual) and a side of their German style potato salad. Surprisingly the potato salad was one of the highlights of the meal. Super flavorful with little pockets of buttery heat in them, so good. Overall he seemed really happy with his choice and it heightened our spirits for the rest of this cold barbecue adventure. Update: he is now sleeping and mumbling after two barbecue outings in a row followed by a liter of water and Tums.
To finish it off we wanted to try something on their menu that seemed unique, the Buzz Mill espresso rubbed pork tender loin. Since it was SO cold they actually gave us a few slices for free since it wasn’t as warm as they would feel comfortable serving on a typical day. We thought this was a really nice gesture and happily took 4 slices. Considering this was more of a “cold cut” style item, the lack of heat was actually fitting. Think of it like a BBQ pork tenderloin version of a room temperature hunk of thick-sliced pastrami. The rub made a nice crust around the edge while the middle was super tender and moist. You can even see a slight smoke ring inside.
Overall this place was pretty awesome. They’re open super late (2 am every night), supply live music and a bonfire, and share a yard with a coffee house… what more could you want from a food truck?