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Fearless Critic restaurant review
San Antonio
Counter service

Mon–Fri 11:00am–9:00pm

Features Delivery, outdoor dining
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC
Reservations Not accepted


1610 NE Loop 410
San Antonio, TX
(210) 824-9191
The Barbecue Station
An ex-Exxon now services barbecue buffs

In the category of converted service stations, barbecue joints loom large, and the Barbecue Station proudly announces its antecedents. Your tray, lined with butcher paper, is piled with sliced brisket, sausage, ribs, and the like in the ex-office, and one dines in the former service bays done up in automobilia. Or in a rear room tarted up in Texas paraphernalia. The only thing that’s lacking is the smoke of ages staining the walls, but they’ve only been open since ‘92.

The ribs routinely win readers’ poll awards, but the sliced brisket, moist and just fatty enough, is also admirable; it doesn’t need the thin, sweet-tart sauce that can be dispensed from squeeze bottles. But sausage (and occasionally brisket) may sometimes arrive übersmoked, so here some rehydration is helpful. The serve-yourself pintos transcend barbecue’s usually dutiful beans; the potato salad is simple but a good foil for the fatty meat. Yes, there’s the sacred floppy white bread, though, heretically, wheat is an option. And, especially surprising for a city-based ‘cue emporium, there’s a decent, down-home dessert. The pecan tartlet looks commercial, but there are more nuts per cubic inch in one of these puppies than in most slices served elsewhere.

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