Moonie’s Texas Barbecue

Jason Martin lived in Austin for more than a decade, working as a programmer and basking in the local barbecue culture. After moving to North Georgia with his family and finding no ‘cue that quite matched his Lone Star predilections, he opened Moonie’s in Flowery Branch along Atlanta Highway. Notice the stack of post oak, the preferred wood for barbecue in Central Texas, piled against the building. Moonie’s centerpiece is the brisket, a sumptuous block of meat seasoned mightily with salt and pepper—the way it’s done at Martin’s favorite barbecue joint, Louie Mueller in Taylor, Texas. Jalapeño sausage made to Martin’s specifications possesses just the right amount of pop and spice. Martin also tried his hand at beef ribs, but not enough customers showed interest—a shame. Pulled pork and ribs are respectable, but I’ll save my appetite for more brisket: It’s the best I’ve had in Georgia.