Eats Beat

The barbecue boom comes to Burleson next: A new Hard Eight is near

See the best of the West in Texas BBQ at the Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival’s Pitmasters Picnic

Check out the Texas BBQ from the Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival's Pitmasters Picnic event April 8, 2018, at Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork.
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Check out the Texas BBQ from the Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival's Pitmasters Picnic event April 8, 2018, at Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork.

Barbecue stands and trailers are sprouting like spring weeds across Dallas-Fort Worth.

But the big arrival is in July, when a giant new Hard Eight BBQ steak and barbecue restaurant will open at 220 N. Burleson Blvd. in Burleson.

This is no street-corner brisket shop, Hard Eight will have 12,000 square feet of seating.

If you haven’t seen it, it’s huge. If I hadn’t seen the sign, I’d have thought it was Six Flags Over Barbecue.

hard eight
A 16-ounce rib-eye steak at Hard Eight BBQ in Roanoke. Khampha Bouaphanh

It’s the Nivens family’s fifth location. The original Hard Eight opened in 2003 in Stephenville, and was the first to bnng “Hill Country barbecue” to Dallas-Fort Worth.

If you think we have plenty of barbecue, Hard Eight also cooks a great steak over open coals.

The new restaurant has something no previous Hard Eight had: rooftop dining.

Of course, the view will be mostly of Interstate 35W and the Harley-Davidson dealership for now, but that part of Burleson continues to grow.

The location will join previous Hard Eight restaurants in Stephenville, Coppell, Roanoke and The Colony.

If you’d like to try another Hard Eight, all locations open at 10:30 a.m. daily for lunch and dinner;

Fort Worth barbecue update

In Fort Worth, Dayne’s Craft Barbecue threw a surprise hard-hat preview Saturday and will continue to open for occasional previews before its July opening.

Dayne’s is remodeling the former Americado food hall at 2000 W. Berry St., changing it to a traditional barbecue restaurant with weekend service planned in July.

It’s the newest on a list of barbecue openings or expansions that includes:

The second Heim Barbecue, now open at 5333 White Settlement Road, Fort Worth;

Panther City BBQ, 201 E. Hattie St., open Thursday through Sunday as a take-out stand and building a restaurant at that South Main Village location;

Flores Barbecue, opening in April at 5000 Clearfork Main St., Fort Worth, is a Texas Monthly top-50 restaurant moving from Whitney;

407BBQ moved to a larger location at 831 Farm Road 407 West near Argyle;

Derek Allan’s Texas Barbecue, a Frisco stand centered around a YouTube video series, is expected to open its first restaurant by summer at 1116 Eighth Ave., Fort Worth.


Not Just Q, a popular stand at food truck parks owned by former TCU Horned Frogs football player David Hawthorne, is open in the Food Hall at Crockett Row, 3000 Crockett St.,

Rack Attack Barbecue, a popular caterer and food truck by pitmaster Brandon Anderson, will open this summer at 104 Smith St. in downtown Mansfield.

Joe Riscky’s Barbeque, 1734 E. El Paso St., serves Fridays and Saturdays at Wild Acre Brewing.;

Hurtado Barbecue, 506 E. Main St., Arlington, serves Saturdays at Division Brewing;

Zavala’s Barbecue, 421 W. Main St., Grand Prairie, serves Saturdays;

Green’s Texas BBQ, 414 W. Euless Blvd., Euless, owned by Don Green of the original North Main BBQ family, serves Saturdays;

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Columnist Bud Kennedy is a Fort Worth guy who covered high school football at 16 and has moved on to two Super Bowls, seven political conventions and 15 Texas Legislature sessions. Since 1985, he has also written more than 2,000 “Eats Beat” columns about Texas dining, restaurants and food.