Best Burnt Ends, August 2012
Burnt ends are chunks that are trimmed from a smoked brisket's fatty pointed section, massaged with a spice rub, and then tossed back into the hot box until they caramelize. Devotees of Kansas City and Texas barbecue styles have dubbed these cook-off delicacies “nuggets of BBQ gold.” At Swingin' Door Texas BBQ, where oak fuels the double-barrel offset smoker, pit master Roger Daneshi's execution strikes a careful balance between flesh and grease. The North Hollywood joint, next to a filling station, could have been plucked from a dusty Texas roadside. The valued bits aren't on the menu; epicures call ahead. » 11018 Vanowen St., North Hollywood.