Food & Drink

BBQ on the Brazos: Stop for the bathroom, stay for the ’cue

John Sanford, of BBQ on the Brazos, serves up brisket.
John Sanford, of BBQ on the Brazos, serves up brisket.

Some of us knew John Sanford before his barbecue restaurant was famous.

BBQ on the Brazos broke into the national news this week, not for his craft barbecue but for a funny sign on the bathroom door.

Sanford cooked at a bistro on the Granbury square and then had a barbecue catering business before he teamed up with Kathryn and Michael Warren in 2013 to open a barbecue stand in a Texaco gas station at the Motorsport Ranch in Cresson.

BBQ on the Brazos quickly became a sellout favorite, with brisket and ribs ready at 9:30 a.m. and selling out by midafternoon.

Texas Monthly listed it in the “Top 25 New & Improved” barbecue stands, along with Billy’s Oak Acres BBQ and Heim Barbecue in Fort Worth and Meat U Anywhere BBQ in Grapevine (and, as of this week, Trophy Club).

ESPN’s Todd Blackledge boosted BBQ on the Brazos in a “Taste of the Town” segment, and Brent Musburger praised it during a Texas-OU football game.

BBQ on the Brazos is also known for clever sides: cornbread salad, cilantro slaw, chile-powder beans and banana pudding.

(This week, it’s known for the women’s bathroom sign saying “no men allowed please.” Sanford said clerks didn’t want a cross-dresser customer, a rodeo cowboy, to use the women’s room.)

It’s open Tuesdays through Fridays at 6:30 a.m. for breakfast, and lunch starts at 9 a.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. Closing time is 3 p.m.

It’s in a gas station-convenience store at 9001 U.S. 377 E, Cresson; 817-396-4758,

Cork & pizza

Cork & Pig Tavern’s June 20 opening on Crockett Street will bring Fort Worth even more wine and wood-fired pizza.

Cork & Pig made its name in Odessa and San Angelo for chef Virginia Dalbeck’s craft cocktails and pizzas with artisan toppings.

The restaurants are so successful, OpenTable ranked the Odessa location as one of the “100 Hottest” American restaurants.

The menu looks like a pizza version of owner Felipe Armenta’s familiar Pacific Table, Press Cafe and The Tavern offerings, with pizzas but also a well-rounded selection of entrees and salads.

Cork & Pig will open at 2869 Crockett St.; 817-759-9280,

68 years of tradition

It’s anniversary weekend at Jake & Dorothy’s Cafe in Stephenville, which also means special prices at the 68-year Texas roadside landmark.

Jake & Dorothy’s, recently upgraded to nonsmoking, will offer all-you-can-eat catfish Friday for $6.95, a $5 hamburger combo Saturday and Sunday, and a special $6 sirloin dinner after 5 p.m. Saturday and all day Sunday.

It’s open for breakfast, lunch and dinner until at least midnight daily; 406 E. Washington St. (Business U.S. 377), 254-965-5211.

Hold on, Haslet

Fans of Vickery Blvd. Cafe will find a new outpost in far north Fort Worth: Texan Diner will open this summer at 2488 Avondale-Haslet Road, at U.S. 287.

Owner and chef Curtis James will bring his home cooking, breakfasts and brunch dishes. Chef Bradford Spradley will hold down the Vickery kitchen. It’s open daily for breakfast and lunch; 4120 W. Vickery Blvd., 817-731-9933,

Bud Kennedy: 817-390-7538,, @EatsBeat. His column appears Wednesdays in Life & Arts and Fridays in