This week’s featured BBQ joint is Charlie’s BBQ, located in North Houston just off of Airline Drive. There isn’t much information out there on them but they did have a pretty good rating on Google which is what led me to this establishment.
Upon entering Charlie’s I immediately noticed that it had quite the eclectic decor, from taxidermied animals up front, photos of John Wayne on the wall and the most intriguing piece was a grouping of wooden cowboys and Native Americans in the back.
Charlie’s is set up like a traditional cafeteria and had a decent selection of meats, sides and deserts plus the prices are pretty reasonable: 15 dollars for a 3 meat plate with two massive sides a drink. I order my usual 3 meat plate to get things started.
The Brisket wasn’t much too look at, looked a little dry (which it was) and was burried under the other meats. It was good when paired with Charlie’s BBQ sauce but wasn’t anything that I was blown away by.
Nice and juicy, a little fatty but the flavor was spot on and they were somewhat tender.
So this is where the meal took a turn for the worse as you can see from the photos this sausage was SO overdone that it was uneatable. I had to choke down one piece to see if maybe the looks were deceiving (they weren’t) and that’s all I could stomach. This was the worst piece of BBQ I’ve eaten in Houston to date.
I actually went back to talk with the person working the line to ask about the spicy sausage, they said it traditionally isn’t that overcooked, I recommended they not serve any more of it to customers that day. They did not offer a refund or to replace. I decided to try a few other items on their menu to see if there was something else that really stood out. I ordered pulled pork and the regular non-spicy sausage.
Well, I didn’t end up with the pulled pork like I asked for, it was actually SLICED pork. I didn’t want to complain again immediately after talking about the spicy sausage so I went with it. It had a good flavor, it wasn’t as moist as I would like but it also wasn’t over salted like some sliced pork tends to be.
I am so glad I decided to try this sausage, it was their best meat by far. Tender but a nice bite to the casing and a wonderful flavor. If their spicy sausage was like this I would make a second trip to Charlie’s BBQ without a doubt.
The sides here are massive! The potato casserole dominated most of my plate and was delicious. There was ham (I think that’s what it was) mixed in with the cheese and potatoes.
Mac & Cheese:
Again a huge portion of cheesy goodness. It was gooey and tasted great. My only complaint is that I wish they were slightly warmer.
This was good. Nothing special but nothing wrong with it either. I ate the whole thing but I wasn’t compelled to want to come back for more.
The price was right, if I only had to buy a single 3 meat plate (I had to order more than that because of how bad the spicy sausage was). They have Tropical Punch Kool Aid which was a fantastic surprise and the service was pleasant albeit slow. The regular sausage, pork ribs, sides & Kool Aid may bring me back if I am in the area but I doubt I will be going out of my way anytime soon to visit Charlie’s BBQ again.
Hours: 10:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. Monday through Sunday