Many local barbecue snobs turn up their noses at Rudy's because it's a chain (albeit Texas-based) with hokey decor, but plenty of Austinites count this as their "go-to" choice for brisket, ribs, or sausage. Takeout is brisk, but many a diner chows down at the vinyl-covered picnic tables. Three kinds of brisket—regular, extra moist, and extra lean—are cooked with a dry spice over wood fired with oak (not mesquite). Go for the extra moist unless you're watching your
waist. The peppery "sause" (available bottled) is added at the table. Aside from brisket, there are pork and baby back ribs, pork loin, prime rib (not worth the extra cost, we think), and even turkey breast. Sides are uniformly good, especially the creamed corn, which has a cult following.