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  • Writer's pictureKL Forslund

Rib Tickler = Yummy BBQ

I don’t get stuck for words too often. But now and then I get stuck for what needs me to say something about. I try not to get political in my posts, if I want to change your mind, you can dang well bet I’d rather use subliminal messaging. I’m advised to avoid complaining or negativity, so I will not tell you why I didn’t like Blade Runner 2049. As I sat in Tomball, eating at a place I hadn’t been to in awhile, it hit me. Let me tell you about The Rib Tickler in Tomball, Texas.

This year marks twenty years I’ve been down here in Texas. I learned about The Rib Tickler on my fourth day of work at Compaq. Until that point, I barely knew my way around the area. My first day was on January 6th, 1997. I figured out to join the lunch train and go where the group was going. I’d meet new people and learn places to eat at the same time.

It was Tim from another team’s birthday. He wanted Rib Tickler. So off we went, sharing cars and meeting people I’d build friendships with. Tim became a good friend, and my manager for a while even. Which worked out pretty well. I also met the Meat Potato.

Picture of a real Meat Potato

That’s not Mr. Potato Head. It’s this thing they do in Texas. They take a baked potato, split it open, slap a dollop of butter in it, then some shredded brisket, sour cream, bacon, cheese and pour BBQ sauce if you’re smart to ask for it. That is all the food a dude needs in a day.

I don’t know if The Rib Tickler is famous for them, but they ought to be. Theirs is the best, and my gut says I may have eaten a few to know. The restaurant once burned down (before I got here) and rebuilt. Lyle Lovett has eaten there. The walls are adorned with signed pictures of famous guests. The owner’s son was on the Patriot’s team. I don’t follow football so the details weren’t too important. I know they catered the Patriots when they were down here for a SuperBowl.

One of the most impressive things is a few years back, the owners sold the place. That wasn’t the impressive part, that was sad. It went through a few hands, and the quality dropped. Then, one day, the original owners were back. Turns out their son had bought the place back when he retired. Well, that impresses me. I’ve been coming to this place for 20 years. It’s a cornerstone business for Tomball and I think it’s success does as much for the town as it does for his parents.

Everytime I eat there, I remember my friend Tim, who since moved off to Austin with half my other Compaq friends. I remember this place being the first real taste of Texas I had. It’s where I plotted to leave HP when it turned evil. I can’t go as often or it’ll be where I die of a coronary. But dang, they still are the best BBQ I’ve had in Texas.

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