I watched David Scott Walker prepare a brisket at the recent Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. I wasn’t able to return 13 hours later to taste the finished product, but Walker told me the preparation and the cooking process was about the same as the way it’s done at his restaurant, Stanley Bar B Que in Overton Square.
Well, the restaurant version brought back memories of that smoky-meaty aroma and all the fun on the banks of the Mississippi River about a month ago. Except this time, I could linger over my meal at one of the long wooden tables inside Walker’s air-conditioned restaurant.
His brisket is cooked in the “hill country” style, Walker said. Ninety percent of his family lives in Texas, so they visited several cities there on summer vacations when he was growing up. “For the most part it’s salt and pepper and then you rely on A - having real good meat. And B - having real good wood. Those are the two flavor components. You really don’t want to add too much in your rub. A little paprika, whatever, that’s fine. But it’s mainly salt and pepper. And you let the meat and the wood shine through. That’s what we do on the river.”
You almost could cut Walker’s brisket with a feather. I asked him how he cooked it.