The meat sweats are over and we remember what could easily be considered the barbecue event of the year. Over the weekend, up to 8,000 people gathered to sample the best food and music in Texas. The sold-out festival brought together 40 of Texas’ best pitmasters, several taco trucks and a few popular names from the Texas country scene, including special guest Randy Travis.
Earlier this year, we told you to mark your calendars for the first annual Troubador Festival, a barbecue and music experience in Texas. Chase Colston and his team at Double Tap Entertainment have teamed up with the Town of Celina, along with a few other sponsors, to deliver the ultimate smoked meat and music experience at Old Celina Park.
The doors opened at noon last Saturday and the pitmasters were ready and waiting. We waved our passes as we walked through the entrance laden with horseshoes. Crowds poured in as smoke rolled over the vast sea of meats through the campgrounds.
From booth to booth there were creative little bites, extravagant menus and pitmasters flanked by their teams who helped create an experience like we’ve never seen before. We tried delicious treats like burnt ends of pork belly with apples, smoked enchiladas, brisket tortas, and even a carrot soufflé. With around 60 different samples to choose from, we’re not sure it’s possible to pick a favorite, but we certainly have a few we’re still thinking about.
Among them is the smoked pork chop topped with coleslaw from Mimsy’s Craft Barbecue in Crockett. Tomball’s Tejas Chocolate & Barbecue offered an incredible chili relleno sausage and carrot soufflé.
Local smokers Vaqueros Texas Bar-BQ had a taco cochinita pibil. Helberg Barbecue in Woodway had wild boar merguez with winter fruit and teres major with blackberry mezcal demi-glace.
As the day wore on, the Texas barbecue hunt continued as more and more people arrived. At 4 p.m., after the feast was over, a few of the pitmasters and a few local taco trucks, with the help of taco lover Anthony Macias, decided to sell the extra food they brought.
While the food was on sale, the live music began. Kyle Nix and the 38 took the start. With each act the crowd grew louder and louder until the loudest roar was probably emitted as Randy Travis took the stage to perform with Josh Abbott Band.
Finally, Pat Green closed it, concluding a deeply successful night. As the days have passed since the first annual Troubadour Festival, the murmurs continue as people recount this remarkable day. If you are reading this and are sad that you missed it, be careful and don’t miss next year for the second round.