My Favorite Martin
Martin's BBQ Joint is behind the brand new S*nic. If you are driving, you may miss seeing Martin's BBQ if you did not know it is behind that fast food place. So, just look for that place and Martin's is right behind it.
On Saturday, starting at about 4 pm, they start pulling out pulled pork from the whole hog that had been in the smoker for about 24 hrs. I suggest if you want any of the whole hog pulled pork, you best get an early start on Saturday dinner, say about 4:30 pm, and specifically order a "Whole Hog" sandwich or plate. There is regular pulled pork from smoked pork Boston butt, but it is not as moist and flavorful because it is not cooked as a whole hog. So, if you go to Martin's for the whole hog, you gotta let them know you are there for the whole hog. I really liked the pulled pork from the smoked whole hog. It had the perfect smokiness throughout the meat, and it was so moist. Non-whole hog pulled pork in my opinion can become stringy, dry and acrid, and I usually do not eat that type of pork. But, man Martin's whole hog pulled pork is the sh!t. I just love it. I would gladly fight that mall and sprawl congestion on Nolensville Rd at about 4:30 pm on Saturday to get another plate of Martin's whole hog.
We also got some smoked wings and a smoked brisket taco. I have had the smoked wings before, but as take-out. Honestly, the take-out was good, but as any take-out, after a 40 minute drive, the wings were good, but not great. Well, eating in, and eating the lightly seasoned smoked wing out straight out of the smoker, the wings were not good, they were Great! Oh, so dang good. And the brisket taco was served simply on a small flour tortilla with a little tomato salsa on top. The brisket was juicy, a little smoky, and almost melty in a good way. This was the best brisket taco I have ever had. I appreciate that most of the pork, and all of the wings were served without sauce because the wonderful moist smoked meat can stand on its own in aroma, texture and flavor. Real BBQ does not need sauce to be enjoyed. BBQ sauce is only needed to cover up bad bbq.
Besides the BBQ Bobby (RIP) made at J*ck's, Martin's BBQ is the best BBQ I have had in the Nashville area hands down. I think I probably ate Bobby's BBQ every other week since I moved to Nashville because Bobby was just the Best Pit Master I knew. After Bobby passed away, I didn't think that I would ever find a replacement to the quality of Bobby's BBQ, and I stopped eating at J*ck's. There was no point of eating at J*ck's anymore because I loved Bobby's BBQ and I thought so highly of Bobby, and that my BBQ life would never be the same. Oh, it was a happy day when Eric and Katie wrote about Martin's BBQ. There was a glimmer of hope for excellent BBQ in Nashville again.
I think one reason the food is so good is because Martin's sells a lot of BBQ. There are no left overs from the day before to sit in the fridge getting hard, string, and dry, all the food is made and served daily. Another reason is that Pat Martin is a real deal BBQ Pit Master, he has some really good BBQ professionals working with him, who understand smoking low and slow, and he has some good support staff who can handle being slammed every Saturday. On Saturday at 5 pm, we met a packed dining room. At 5:15 pm, the ordering line was out the door. As we left at about 5:45 pm, the line was still out the door, every table was packed inside, and every table outside on the patio was taken, and every table along the sidewalk was taken. Pat Martin and staff have this gig down pat.
Martin's is one of those magical restaurants that beckons me to return. I am still thinking about the whole hog pork plate, those smoky wings and the brisket taco. I cannot help thinking about Martin's BBQ, it is so good. The aroma, color, texture, and flavor are just that perfect combination which makes me want more. I keep reliving in my mind Martin's whole hog pulled pork, wings and brisket. There are only a couple dishes in my lifetime that I keep thinking about, and long for, and Martin's BBQ is one of those dishes. I guess I have to say I love Martin's BBQ.