I had seen both good and so so reports here on FTC, but then I saw Andy Wang’s glowing recommendation in Food and Wine (best BBQ in every state), so I had to check out Moo’s Craft for myself.
I don’t need to repeat their story, as Andy wrote a great article on the backstory here: https://www.foodandwine.com/travel/restaurants/moos-craft-barbecue-los-angeles
I hope that these biweekly pickups are able to sustain the Munoz’s until they can open up the brick & mortar restaurant that was originally planned.
They were previously at Smorgasburg, but given the lockdown, they are now doing curbside pickup only once every couple Sundays from Crafted Kitchen in DTLA. It’s highly recommended to preorder, and they seem to sell out about a week in advance.
For smaller groups, they have a “Trinity Plate” variety, but since we had a slightly larger group, we ordered meat by the pound. We didn’t quite do OOE, but we were able to sample quite a few things from their menu as a result.
I will get to the punchline first - everything was delicious and executed to a really high level. They know how to cook meat! And it shows in all the textures and flavors. This perhaps is the best American-style BBQ I can remember having in LA, though I am far from an expert. And I haven’t gone on forays through Texas like a couple of you have, though I have gotten to try a few good places in the South.
I added the quantity we ordered below so you can see how much that is in the picture. Also, the family was sitting around waiting for me to finish the photos so I had to snap quickly and some aren’t in the greatest focus…
Prime Brisket (2 lbs)
The brisket is what they’re known for, and it did not disappoint. Their slices were well marbled and tended to the fatty side. The meat was extremely moist and rich, even for the pieces where there was no obvious fat. None of that having to mix a piece of fat with a piece of muscle to get something good here. The bark was loaded with some nice spices - this might be my favorite brisket in LA.
(No close up photo) - Prime Beef Rib (aka the Flintstones Brontosaurus Rib)*
This was like eating more of the brisket, except that there was a higher bark to meat ratio, the meat was a little more robust (but not dry or tough), along with some of more tendon-y strips near the bone. Similar flavor profile to the above, so pick what you like more.
Duroc Pork Spare Ribs (3 lbs in that picture)
This was our favorite within the tray, though it’s hard to pick. The meat had some chew and was not melt-off-the-bone (but a lot of people don’t like that anyway). The spices permeated throughout, and it was easy to gobble through ribs quickly. The BBQ sauce added a significant amount of kick, but was not necessary to enjoy this.
Duroc Pulled Pork (1 lb)
Very moist and unctuous - this was a large, intimidating clump of meat. I did feel it was a good idea to add some BBQ sauce to this to get the full experience.
A makeshift pulled pork sandwich using Martin’s Hot Dog Rolls
Pork Verde Sausage (1 order comes with 4 links)
Made with fire roasted poblano peppers and Oaxacan cheese. Both of these sausages were fantastic - snappy skin, with extremely juicy tender meat inside that will squirt on your table if you’re not careful. The sausage gives it a nice richness, and there’s a significant amount of heat from the spices. The green is deceiving, as it was spicier than the red birria.
Birria Sausage (ditto)
I’m not that familiar with birria proper, but I think this version was made out of beef rather than mutton - this was a really well executed sausage, but it didn’t have quite the wow factor like the pork verde.
We also ordered all the sides:
Potato salad - good solid version with not too much mayo
Cole slaw - Nice brightness to offset everything else - this was the more creamy kind, and I’m more into the acidic version these days
Mac & Cheese - Solid version of this
Brisket Loaded Beans (and boy do they mean LOADED with brisket) - great value, and I’d say it was 50/50 meat vs beans - more like a chili. Fantastic.
They also gave us some a couple containers of BBQ sauce along with pickles and pickled onions - the acidity of which made for a really nice respite during such a decadent meal. The BBQ sauce was great - the consistency was a little lighter, but it had a nice combination of sweetness, acidity, and then good of fashion kick-you-in-the-rear spiciness.
All in all, I definitely recommend that you try Moo’s Craft if you get the chance.