The author's picks:

Louie Mueller

206 W. 2 St., Taylor, Texas

512-352-6206

Stiles Switch BBQ & Brew

6610 N. Lamar Blvd., Austin

512-380-9199

La Barbecue

1906 E. Cesar Chavez St., Austin

512-605-9696

Smitty's Market

208 S. Commerce St., Lockhart, Texas

512-398-9344

Other notable barbecue restaurants in and around Austin:

The Salt Lick

18300 Farm to Market Road 1826, Driftwood

512-858-4959

Franklin Barbecue

900 E. 11th St., Austin

512-653-1187

Micklethwait Craft Meats

1309 Rosewood Ave., Austin

512-791-5961

Kreuz Market

619 N. Colorado St., Lockhart, Texas

512-398-2361

Black's Barbecue

215 N. Main St., Lockhart, Texas

512-398-2712

Southside Market & Barbecue

1212 Hwy. 290 E., Elgin, Texas

512-281-4650

Luling City Market

633 E. Davis St., Luling, Texas

830-875-9019

Cooper's Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que

604 W. Young St., Llano, Texas

325-247-5713