Heim Barbecue, whose trailer-borne smoked delicacies quickly became the stuff of Funkytown legend after owner Travis Heim materialized on a Southside bar lawn for Saturday cooks last year, will flood the Fort Worth market with its trademark bacon burnt ends from a new brick-and-mortar location, starting August 6.
The grand opening date was announced Sunday on Heim's Facebook page, but
never always read the comments. Heim gave one enthusiastic commenter a cryptic tip concerning possible test runs next week around the lunch hour.
Diehards will pack the Magnolia corridor on opening day and a line will surely snake out the door and around the corner until the meat is gone, much like they did when Heim and his wife Emma set up shop in a rented trailer on the lawn of the Republic Street Bar. The Heims shut down the trailer in March to get the brick-and-mortar up and running.
One thing that won't change with the new restaurant: the "while it lasts" frenzy that has always surrounded the Heim operation, at least in the short term. As always, if you want this barbecue, you'd better get there early.
"We want a period of time to get comfortable with the lunch service and then expand to full dinner service later," Heim says. "That may be a week, it may be a couple months."
Though capacity is no longer an issue after Heim's successful Kickstarter campaign netted the team two huge horizontal smokers, Heim said he didn't want to start cooking 100 briskets every day just because they could.
But even those unfortunates darkening Heim's threshold after the mouth-watering brisket, ribs and sausage are gone for the day will be greeted with something warm and meaty. An evening menu featuring bacon burnt ends, smoked hot wings and the HeimBurger will be served until close alongside more than 160 whiskeys and a ton of local craft beer.
Starting August 6, Heim has a chance to establish itself as Fort Worth's equivalent to the legendary craft barbecue joints that have garnered statewide and regional acclaim in Dallas, Austin and the Hill Country. When Travis and Emma open Heim's doors, they will once again be serving the best barbecue in Fort Worth, without a really close second.
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And that's not lost on Heim, whose business started at pop-ups and parties.
"It's been a whirlwind so far," Travis says. "At 1 a.m. the other night, I was looking around the place, alone, and I thought 'Holy Crap, this is our restaurant.' But then it's back to work again."
Despite the flurry of OMG-Heim-is-finally-opening press, there's still no official word from the Rougned Odor camp on whether the Texas Rangers' second baseman plans to cash in on Heim's offer of free barbecue for life after the punch heard round the baseball world to the jaw of Toronto Blue Jays' outfielder Jose Bautista in May.
Heim Barbecue, 1109 W. Magnolia Ave., Fort Worth