Bluebonnet Barbeque offers Texan-style meat you need to try

Bluebonnet Barbeque has earned its place in the hearts and stomachs of many Melburnians, with Chef Chris Terlikar’s establishment being one of the best genuine Texas barbeque joints in the city.

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Kate Shanasy

Having honed his craft during 18-hour stints all over the Lone Star state, Terlikar’s Texan jaunt helped revolutionise his cooking style and saw him develop Bluebonnet’s distinctive taste. The Bluebonnet team have established themselves as the inner north’s hottest ticket, with a demand for two sittings on Friday and Saturday nights. But the good news is that the smoker is a 500-gallon tank and can dish out 280kg of barbequed goodness every time it’s fired up.


Although, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing for veggie worshippers with the delicious smoked jackfruit being hugely popular with all. The team recommends about 200-300g of meat per person, and with 100g servings of all meats, it’s easy to mix and match to make sure your table gets a taste of everything. The food is served Texan-style and hits your table on a large tray, alongside small plates for the range of sides. This traditional presentation immediately reminds you that you’ve made the right choice.


On our Bluebonnet experience, we were served an epic tray of Black Angus brisket, Berkshire pulled pork, baby back pork ribs, porter braised beef cheek, crispy lamb ribs and hot smoked Berkshire pork belly. This was coupled with apple and celeriac slaw with sherry mustard vinaigrette, carrots glazed with bourbon and a light and fluffy black garlic cornbread with thyme butter.


There’s no rush at Bluebonnet, so as the grazing begins it’s only right to sample one of the housemade picklebacks – their drinks list is just as substantial as their food offering thanks to their adjoining bar, Loretta’s, offering a top range of tap beers, tinnies and stubbies, cocktails and whiskey.


The way the meat is prepared and smoked ensures that every ounce of juice stays inside the meat. It helps break up the fatty goodness on cuts like brisket and pork belly, before the cut is sealed with a crispy dry rub that has the right amount of heat, sweetness and spice. Barbeque sauce is available, but the meat is so flavoursome and juicy that it’s not even needed. This is definitely not your local drench-it-in-barbeque-sauce kind of rib joint, that’s for sure.


The fact that Bluebonnet is so popular shouldn’t alarm, since they happily take bookings for any time that suits and don't make desperate diners wait on the corner – a look that’s become a little too familiar across Melbourne. It’s worth keeping an eye on Bluebonnet Barbeque as we move into 2018, with the Fitzroy North area changing so quickly with apartment buildings and developments. Here's hoping that gems like this never suffer from the inner North’s constant changes.

Bluebonnet Barbeque is located at 32 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North. You can find their menu here