Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sunday BBQ: Hard 8 in Stephenville

Since it was Sunday and I didn't need to get back home from the DFW area until the afternoon I took a longer route home. This gave me a chance to ride with my 3Day Route Safety buddy, Chuck, and it let me try out some good Q.

We left his house about 8:30 and headed to I-820 around Ft. Worth. The plan was to go around to HWY 377 toward Granbury. Once in Grandbury we detoured and took in some fun roads worth mentioning. FM 4 from Granbury to Lipan is great. The speed limit is 70 and the corner signs range from 60 to 65mph. This is one of those roads where you could "blow the carbon out" and have fun. Of course, I don't know what the normal LEO status is. From Lipan take FM1189 south. This road has some fun twisties as well although the road surface isn't as good. It sort of reminded me of riding in the hill country. Eventually you'll come to a junction with FM1188, take that west to continue the fun until you reach HWY 108. Take it south to Stephenville and park in the Hawg Pen at Hard 8 BBQ on HWY 67.

Now about the Q. Hard Eight BBQ is some dang good eating. They cook on brick pits as folks in Central Texas. They have a large variety of meats and you order it outside right next to one of the pits. I ordered some brisket and a pork rib then carried my tray inside to get my tea and beans. Beans, Bread and JalapeƱos are free at Hard 8. The atmosphere is typical Texas BBQ joint. The brisket is fall apart tender. You simply have to pick it up with your fingers and put it in your mouth. Don't mess with the sauce as it's a little too heavy and hides the great taste of the meat. This is meat that deserves to be eaten by itself. The pork spare rib was good and had a lemon pepper rub on it which complimented the smoky flavor nicely. The pinto beans, mmmm the beans, they were good. The large slices of bacon turned me off a little but I just picked them out. It looked as if they had just taken a package of sliced bacon and cut it in 2 and then tossed it in the pot. The bean gravy was a little thin but well flavored. This BBQ place will have to go in my custom POI database for good eating places.

After the food was enjoyed and Chuck and I had visited a little more we decided it was time to head out. He was going back up 377 and I was heading down HWY 281 toward Waco. According to the GPS I had about 275 miles to get to the house, a full stomach and 3/4 tank of gas. I could make it home in 1 stop. So at 12:20pm I point the bike south and head out. 281 to 6 to 290 to 362 to I10 to 99 to 90A and I made it home by 5pm with 409 miles on the odometer for the day and 775 miles for the weekend.

One notable part of the trip home was the town of Bremond. More specifically the pitiful excuse of a gas station in the town. There's only the Citgo that I could find and with 5 miles left on the tank according to the computer I wasn't going to ride around a lot. That was a good thing as I put 5.25 gallons in my 5.2 gallon tank. This station is on the corner of 46 and 14, you can't miss it as there's a blinking light there. The pumps aren't digital and have the old analogue spools in them with only even numbers labeled in the penny spot. Well after filling up I walked inside to pay and use the restroom. When I inquired where the restrooms were I was told they didn't have public restrooms. I laughed and thought it was a joke and the lady responded with an attitude and assured me they didn't have a public restroom. So apparently Bremond is stuck somewhere in the 1970's. Thankfully they were there and open as I had really pushed my range a few miles further than I should have but it would have been nice to have a restroom.

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