Broussard’s Links + Ribs BBQ is a local landmark for Beaumont residents. It has been in business for 30 years and has been in its current location for the last 20 years. Broussard’s is by no means a secret, and even if it was, the bright green and yellow of the building would seize the attention of any passersby.
I learned a long time ago that just because a place has commendable longevity or an impressive local following, it does not guarantee a good meal. Sometimes the current proprietors no longer run said joint like grandpa used to or perhaps the locals have just grown accustomed to sub-par barbecue. Broussard’s had all of the accolades but it was time to hear from the meat.
Broussard’s is known for their links and, as the sign can attest, their ribs. I ordered both of these meats along with a helping of brisket. The meats were prepared and delivered in separate containers.
The link was my starting point as it is Broussard’s most famous meat and was the recommendation that had me standing in line in the first place. These housemade links are all-beef and are a unique style you find in East Texas. They are not your typical sausage and are not boudin, but fall somewhere in between. The thick casings suggest the links be eaten in typical boudin fashion, squeezed from the skin, but the flavor inside is unique. The delicious meat has very little of the spice you might expect but packs a huge heft of garlic. Drippings from the greasy links mix the with the sauce that they were served in. It is a perfect example of an East Texas Link and quite a satisfying one at that.
The ribs were served in the thin housemade sauce that Broussard’s applies to all of their meats. The ribs were suspiciously hot and I had to wait for them to cool down to not burn my hand. As I began eating the ribs, I was surprised by the inconsistencies from rib to rib. The meat fell clean off of the bone on the majority of the ribs, though some hung loosely. Some bites had appropriate chew while other were unrelentingly tough, still others were like stewed meat place around a bone. The flavor was not bad but the inconsistency from rib to rib was odd.
In this area, brisket is a wild card and when I saw my beef coated in the deep maroon sauce, I was worried. Beneath that sauce, however, I found a thin smoke ring bordered by a nice thick, firm crust. The brisket was actually pretty good, particularly for this area. The crust was the most flavorful part, showcasing the smoke that had worked on this meat. The sauce had already covered the rest of the slices and though it did not carry an overwhelming flavor, it still overshadowed the smokiness of the meat with a tomato tang. I did not dislike the sauce but I always prefer the meat to stand on its own. However, I can imagine this brisket could dry out without the aid of the thin sauce.
Broussard’s is about as divey as it gets. You park in a gravel parking lot and order from a window of a green and yellow shack. There is on-site dining that appropriately consists of a covered picnic area, though most orders are taken to go.
The links at Broussard’s deserve the top billing and should not be sharing the marquee with the ribs. The links are the star that drive people to this joint. They are so unique that you will find yourself craving these delicious garlic packed links after your first taste. It is very hard to find a substitution for Broussard’s offering. The brisket does fine in its supporting role but the ribs flopped. With the pride Broussard’s has in the ribs, they may be worth a hesitant second try.
The popularity and longevity of Broussard’s in the community; I get it. They have hooked the locals with these links, ensuring a steady flow of patrons and plenty of word-of-mouth referrals.