Scott Roberts has been immersed in Texas BBQ culture ever since he helped build the original Salt Lick BBQ pit in 1965.
Under Roberts' ownership, the Salt Lick has expanded to three locations and opened the Salt Lick Cellars Wine Tasting Room. Salt Lick distributes BBQ shipments nationwide and continues to serve acclaimed recipes that have been in the Roberts clan since the 1820s.
WITH Scott Roberts
We called up Scott Roberts of Salt Lick Bar-B-Que to talk about family recipes, the secret to a great brisket, and the one ingredient not allowed in his kitchen.
Tell us about what you'll be cooking at the Q in the Lou and why you chose to bring that dish and side to St. Louis.
We are known for our Texas brisket and our coleslaw is quite unique, so we thought we would share it with y'all.
If you had to offer one helpful tip to the backyard barbecuers of the world, what would it be?
Don't spend all that time cooking, go see a professional.
If you could take an all-expenses-paid BBQ road trip across America, which three pits would you stop at?
Scott's BBQ in Hemingway, South Carolina; Moonlite BBQ in Lexington, Kentucky; and Dreamland BBQ in Birmingham, Alabama.
Describe the Salt Lick menu in one word.
Who is or was the biggest influence on your cooking?
My family, from my great grandmother to my mother and father.
You're Q in the Lou's westernmost pitmaster. Tell us, can you get great barbecue further west than Texas?
Yes, it's just different.
You helped build the original Salt Lick BBQ pit in 1965. What was the world of BBQ like back then? Different than today?
The smoke was the same. Today, there is much more variety in what gets smoked.
Your recipe's been in the family since the 1820s. What kind of techniques and ingredients have been passed down over the centuries?
The open pit style of cooking we still use today. Also, the seasonings for our dry rub are original.
What makes a great brisket?
A healthy, corn-fed cow to start and 18 hours of tender loving care.
What's the one ingredient or tool never allowed in your kitchen?