AP NEWS

Review: Goodfire BBQ makes respectable S.A. debut

February 18, 2019

Note: This is a Just a Taste review, which the Express-News does soon after a restaurant or bar opens to give our first impressions.

After more than two years in development, the fires are finally stoked at Goodfire BBQ. The new restaurant is the latest project from the team behind Chacho’s and Chacho’s Chicken.

Goodfire anchors a sizable lot near the intersection of Loop 410 and Perrin Beitel Road. The restaurant is tucked into a former Taco Cabana location. The space has received a significant makeover with an aesthetic that makes Goodfire feel closer to an aspiring restaurant chain prototype than a one-off temple to smoked meats.

That template extends to the menu, which borrows and blends elements from Chacho’s into a lineup of dishes that echo the brand’s core identity. The results are as good or better than many multiunit barbecue outfits, but it doesn’t yet rival the best joints showcased in our 52 Weeks of BBQ series.

On the menu: Goodfire is in a soft-opening mode at the moment, and is currently serving only a portion of its eventual full menu. The basics — brisket, ribs and sausage — were fairly well represented in the Classic Trio Plate ($13.99). The brisket had a gentle smokiness to it with nicely rendered ribbons of fat throughout. The sausage was a better-than-average house-made blend of pork and beef. The ribs were too chewy and light on the smoke to keep up with their platemates.

Smoked turkey ($15.99 per pound) performed surprisingly well, with good moisture, seasoning and just the right level of smoke. Pulled pork laced with chopped jalapeño chiles was a decent value at $10.99 per pint, but was otherwise unremarkable.

Side dishes ($1.89-$7.99) were a mixed bag. Creamed corn with tough kernels and starchy, bland potato salad were the underperformers. A nice mayonnaise-free tangy cole slaw and very solid cup borracho beans did the heavy lifting.

Goodfire’s smoked meats can be configured into several Chacho’s classics. The chopped and sauced barbecue piled onto nachos ($3.99 for four individually composed nachos with guacamole) were flavorful and generous, and the queso mounded with a scoop of pulled pork ($3.69 for a small cup) helped that meat reach new heights thanks to, well, cheese, obviously.

Will Goodfire BBQ earn a spot on anyone’s must-hit road map of Texas restaurants? Not likely. But it’s not hard to have a good time and a good meal there, and the food is a value, to boot.

Location: 8629 Perrin Beitel Road, 210-267-1155, goodfirebbq.com, Facebook: GoodfireBBQ

Hours: 11 a.m. until sold out Monday through Saturday

Paul Stephen is a staff writer in the San Antonio and Bexar County area. Read him on our free site, mySA.com, and on our subscriber site, ExpressNews.com. | pstephen@express-news.net | Twitter: @pjbites | Instagram: @pjstephen