As winter Sunday mornings go, this one feels especially brisk as we step out of the car at Smoke Sessions Barbecue in Royse City. The sun is out, but so is a biting wind that finds any exposed skin in short order. Seeking shelter from the breeze in the shadow of Chad Sessions' eponymous food truck, we notice that we're the only ones here.
"I don't know where everyone is today," Sessions laments. "Usually, when the sun's out, we're pretty busy."
Sessions and his wife, Jessica, have been serving barbecue out of their trailer in Royse City since 2016, and popularity drove them to their semi-permanent location in May of last year, to a gravel lot on FM 548 just south of State Highway 276.
"At the end of the day, we know we're just a food truck in a muddy parking lot," Sessions says.
Don't let the description dissuade your visit though. Smoke Sessions is churning out delectable barbecue, and word is starting to spread to the rest of DFW.
We sampled both lean and moist cuts of Smoke Sessions' brisket as part of a two-meat plate ($15) and were presented with textbook examples of perfectly smoked brisket. There are no secrets to Sessions' brisket. Salt, pepper, oak smoke and time conspire to make meat magic in the classic Central Texas style.
You shouldn't stop at just brisket, however. We also ordered pulled pork that was a juicy pile of shredded smokey goodness, either with or without Sessions' tangy homemade sauce. But we were most blown away by the garlic and pepper jack beef sausage that Sessions makes in-house.
"Everyone does cheddar and jalapeño," Sessions says. "I think it's a little played out and wanted to try something different."
Each bite of the link has an impressive snap of the casing and is followed by juicy explosions of garlic and beef and cheese, like tiny flavor-filled grenades going off in your mouth. Keep chewing and an extra burst of heat kicks in, which is the habanero that Sessions throws in the beef mixture for good measure. It's one of the best barbecue sausages we've ever had, and certainly the most unique.
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Throw in solid sides like a well-seasoned red skin potato salad or the ultra-creamy and smoky mac and cheese, and it's easy to see why people come to Smoke Sessions, despite the out-of-the-way location. Sessions' model of success seems to be following many of the other barbecue food trucks we've sampled of late. Sessions gave us the inside scoop that a formal restaurant is in the works in Royse City.
"Hopefully later this summer, we'll be up and running," Sessions says.
We're already plotting our next visit for more of Smoke Sessions' killer brisket and sausage. A respite from the elements in a brick-and-mortar location is simply an added bonus.
Smoke Sessions Barbecue, 7126 FM 548, Royse City