How do you know a Hall of Fame dish when you see one? What does a scouting report grade really mean? Is it a measure of how a dish makes you FEEL? If it is, doesn’t the smell of the restaurant and your current mood factor into that feeling too? Or, is it a reflection of what you can expect other people to feel? These are the types of questions bouncing around my head right now. Watching Janero Pargo play basketball makes me happy. It makes me happier than watching, say, Kevin Durant. A lot happier actually. But if I were to write scouting reports on the two of them, I couldn’t grade Pargo higher than Durant. That wouldn’t help another scout make an informed decision. That is, aside from the decision of whether they should get beers and watch the game with me (yes) or hang out with a bandwagon Warriors fan (no). So when I see BBQ at the Tejas Chocolate Craftory I want to see Hall of Fame. But I also know that I irrationally love BBQ. This place is 45 min outside of Houston and all I can think about is when I can schedule another trip. In no particular order: meat is perfect, sauce is totally unique but perfect, carrot soufflé is perfect, bean-to-bar chocolate counter is an unusual pairing with a BBQ joint but also perfect. A note on the meat: There has been an explosion of great BBQ in Texas in the last 5-10 years. This development was the byproduct of a reaction between Austin hipsters, food science, and old school Texas pitmasters. When the dust settled, we were left with a number of BBQ joints that could reliably pump out what used to be the elusive holy grail of BBQ—perfectly moist brisket. I’ve eaten at a lot of the top joints—Franklin’s, Killen’s, Pecan Lodge, Corkscrew, Luling Market, etc. While the new wave of BBQ is a new type of mind-blowingly delicious meat candy, it normally leaves you feeling like shit afterwards. I ate at Corkscrew last week, and while it was amazingly tasty at the time, I felt like I had a hangover by the time I got home. That’s where Tejas Chocolate Craftory is different. I felt great afterwards. It’s perfectly moist and supremely tasty, but it has a clean taste to it. It’s not a devastating gut bomb. And that’s why I’m tempted to drop a HOF rating. But I know that BBQ is my Pargo. So I’m sticking with Franchise.