Reata and Magdalena's collaborated on this tasty corn relish.

It seems I missed the worst of the January-like weather this weekend when Anna Caplan went to the burger event, but I still appreciated the two fire pits that were going when I went to the Pitmasters Picnic that wound up the festival.

I was concerned that too many barbecue dishes would all wind up looking the same, but I found enough variety to keep me snapping my little camera, like the corn relish in the picture above that Reata and Magdalena’s put out at their joint booth. Buffalo Bros.‘ barbecued chicken wings was a welcome change of pace from all the brisket, as well. Dallas’ Cattleack BBQ also came in with this “cutie pie,” combining the taste of Texas with the look of a British meat pie, with a deep earthy flavor:

A lot of flavor in a small package

Of course, the title for the prettiest dish had to go to Kreuz Market of Lockhart, which served up this vivid tableau of beef shoulder with a side of pickled red onions. When you’re at a food fair like our festival, presentation goes a long way:

Ooh, pink! So pretty!

The biggest line was for the showstopper of the event and perhaps the entire festival. Black’s Barbecue‘s, which is also of Lockhart, brought this sausage cooked in maple syrup and served between two glazed doughnut holes. The resulting bomb of sweet and savory flavors made me heartily sorry that Lockhart is 219 miles away from us. This was worth the wait in line and may be worth the drive.

The brisket was good, too, but barbecue sausage doughnuts need to become a thing.

As for desserts, Stillwater Barbeque of Abilene contributed an excellent banana pudding with a firm crumb underneath the creamy sauce. As you’d figure, Melt Ice Creams did our own city proud with a bread pudding ice cream laced with whiskey butterscotch and whiskey-soaked pecans. As Anna noted yesterday, Heim Barbecue continued to be conspicuously absent at this event, but there’s always next year’s shindig.