The 10 Texas Restaurants We Loved Most in 2021

Over the past almost-two-years, restaurants have had to navigate mandated closures, limited capacity requirements, unruly diners, and changing regulations. Paired with the already difficult nature of the industry, staying in business was no easy feat, and survival became the new benchmark for success.

Plenty of great spots have closed, and we’ll collectively pour one out for our fallen favorites. But here we’re celebrating 10 great spots that are still with us—the places that help to define Texas’s incredibly diverse dining scene and range from high-end hotspots to old-school icons. The criteria is simple: we love them.

Now, let’s patronize all 10 to ensure they stick around for years to come.


Snow's BBQ

Snow’s BBQ

You’re here because: Well, probably because you saw the Chef’s Table feature on Snow’s and its octogenarian pitmaster, Tootsie Tomanetz. But this Saturdays-only BBQ joint has been smoking some of the state’s best meat since 2003, and it’s still going strong, drawing crowds who camp out the night before to be first in line when the doors open at 8 a.m. If you can’t make it to Snow’s, you can order meat and sauces online. “During the pandemic, orders were probably two to three times the normal amount, and it stayed steady through the whole time we were closed from March to November,” says Snow’s owner Kerry Bexley, adding that online sales helped to prop up the business during that time.

You’re dining on: All the classics. The perfectly smoked brisket, pork spare ribs and jalapeño sausages are a must. Add some potato salad to your plate and end with banana pudding. 

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