My entire team went to lunch at Hard Eight BBQ this past week. This is the first time the entire team has been out for BBQ. Although we live in Texas, we don’t normally crave barbecue at the same time. Hard Eight opened in the area a few months back and we’ve heard nothing but good things so of course we had to check it out. The only bad thing I’ve heard about them is that the wait to get your hands on the barbecue can be up to an hour on the weekends. We no likey that so we went right when they opened for lunch and did not have to wait at all.
Check out these grills! You have to walk by them when you queue up to order your food. Can you imagine what it’s like when there’s meat grilling on this thing? If seeing something like that while you wait in line doesn’t get you excited about your food then I don’t know what will!
So here are the many delicious options that Hard Eight offers. In case you can’t tell from the picture, I’ve taken the liberty of listing them out for you below. I had a great time selecting all the items that I wanted to eat. I ordered way too much food, but it’s all for science.
- Pork Ribs
- Smoked sirloin
- Sausage: regular and jalapeño
- Chicken poppers
- Shrimp poppers
- Chicken kabobs
- Sirloin kabobs
- Ribeye – cooked to order
- Prime ribs on Friday through Sunday
They offer two types of barbecue sauce. The traditional is thick, tangy and sweet. I prefer that one. The hot and spicy is not as thick and has a black peppery taste to it. It reminds me of the North Carolina style barbecue sauce.
Hard Eight is known for their jalapeño sweet corn so of course I had to get some. It was very rich, thick and super sweet. They weren’t lying when they said it was sweet corn. It was really good, but too sweet for me. I’m glad I tried it, but I probably wouldn’t get it again. I did have their macaroni and cheese (no picture…sorry) and that was really good. The macaroni shells were coated in thick cheese sauce. Macaroni and cheese purist may not like it due to the cheese sauce, but it was damn good to me.
So…this is some of the barbecue that I ordered. Yes, I said some, because I could not get everything in one picture. I ordered pork ribs, regular sausage, smoked sirloin and chicken poppers in this picture. The pork ribs were delicious. They were fall off the bone and packed full of flavor. The regular sausage was amazing. I got to try some of the jalapeño sausage and you could totally taste the pepper. Both versions were delicious, but I think I prefer the regular sausage. The traditional barbecue sauce went great with it. The chicken popper was okay. I thought the bacon would be smokier. Does that even make sense? I guess I was thinking it would taste like breakfast bacon but it didn’t. It was thick sliced and tasted like regular pork to me.
The smoked sirloin was delicious. It’s not the moistest (cringe…I hate that word), but it wasn’t dry at all. It had a subtle smoke flavor to it. I thought it might taste like the smoked sirloin steak at Texas Land and Cattle, but it didn’t. Of course, I normally get my steak medium rare so that could account for the difference. I liked the hot and spicy barbecue with the sirloin. It was a good combo.
I had to get some shrimp poppers too. I couldn’t help it. I was expecting it to taste like the Shrimp En Brochette at Razoo’s, but it didn’t. I don’t know why I thought it would taste like the shrimp wrapped bacon at a cajun restaurant. Obviously it wouldn’t since the cuisine is totally different. I liked the shrimp popper better than the chicken.
I had to get the smoked chicken. HAD TO. I got half of a chicken, because that’s the only way they sell it at Hard Eight. Omigod it was so good. You could taste the marinade and smoke throughout the entire chicken. The skin had the most flavor of course, but the meat could rival it. I would recommend the chicken for sure. This was my favorite.
I have to confess that I forgot to order brisket… I know, I know. How can you go to a Texas barbecue place and not order brisket?! I was too busy selecting the other items that by the time I was seated and started eating we (my team commented) realized that I didn’t even get the most popular item on the menu. I’m such a loser. Fortunately, for me everyone on my team got brisket and I was given some to try. It was delicious and it was obvious why everyone ordered it. The brisket was moist and didn’t even need barbecue sauce. The next time I go I’ll remember to order the brisket. 🙂
Hard Eight has cafeteria style seating so if you didn’t bring enough people to fill the table you may be sitting with strangers. There is plenty of seating inside with AC and outside in their covered patio area. The staff were really nice and helpful. If you haven’t had the pleasure yet, I recommend that you give Hard Eight a try. I do suggest that you try to get there early so you don’t have to wait and find a good table. I’m sure during the week the wait isn’t so bad (not that I would really know since we went super early), but I’ve driven by on the weekends and the line goes out of the building…
So, I guess you’re wondering if I finished my entire meal. The answer is no. I had A LOT of leftovers that I took back to the office and shared with my friends. 🙂