Not like we need to be in a certain mood to enjoy good barbecue. But there are times you’re so hungry, most other restaurant options seem like fluff.
That’s how it was the other day when hubby L and I were on our way home from tooling around Otero County, in Southeast New Mexico.
I was hungry, figured he was, too, and I was driving, so I asked, Where do we eat?
It’s your birthday weekend, he answered. We eat whatever and wherever you want.
Sweet man, I thought to myself. I’ll renew his contract.
But then, oh, how I struggled to decide between a barbecue joint I had heard about and someplace fancier because, after all, this was my BIRTHDAY weekend.
That struggle took all of . . . 10 seconds.
Then I headed for the barbecue joint because I was HUNGRY.
The name of that barbecue joint is the Hitch N Post. It’s in Alamogordo right there on White Sands Boulevard, across the street from Rockin’ BZ Burger.
It’s easy to see why some call it the “Alamogordo Cowboy BBQ.”
For one thing, Hitch N Post stands next door to the New Heart Cowboy Church, the only “cowboy church” in town.
For another, Hitch N Post‘s owner (and the Cowboy Church’s pastor) Couy Griffin, is a real cowboy. He lives on a ranch in Tularosa, Alamogordo’s neighbor to the north, and competes in area rodeos.
What else puts the “cowboy” in this Alamogordo COWBOY BBQ?
A life-size image of John Wayne in cowboy character with guns raised welcomes you just inside the entrance. Art depicting cowboys, in drawings and photographs, line the walls. Plaques post warnings you might have seen in a saloon way back when.
Yee-hah! Vive la cowboy différence!
The table layout looks familiar, though. The wooden picnic tables set along each side of the long dining room hold true to the tradition of barbecue joints elsewhere.
Each table is set with condiments and a paper towel roll big enough to keep us tidy once the barbecue sauce starts to fly.
And every one of those tables is polished to the max and topped with a glass flower vase filled with dry pinto beans. (OK, the vases aren’t the least bit traditional, but I thought it a nice touch to pretty up the place so the cowGIRLS feel at home, too.)
This cowgirl sure did. Bright and shiny, I liked the looks of the place right away.
I also liked the looks of the menu. The number of choices is not so overblown that it takes you days to order. And, yes, it also helps when they offer you samples of the different meats available, which we gladly accepted.
Hitch N Post offers daily specials in addition to what’s on their blackboard menu.
But L. ended up ordering a pork rib special while I opted for a beef and pork plate combination not found on the specials list or the menu.
(Don’t you luv it when a restaurant is flexible enough to allow that? Shout out to counter gal Becky for hooking me up!)
Our plates arrived at our shiny tables quickly enough.
And the half brisket and half jalapeño sausage combo I chose tasted good enough.
Although I could have used more oomph in the brisket, the sausage was full of flavor. I ate happily for some time without even thinking about adding barbecue sauce.
When I did, the spicier of the two versions offered won me over.
If you’re a chile wimp, don’t let the word “spicy“ on the label put you off. This really is a MILD sauce, easy to handle.
As a side, my cup of green chile stew broth turned out to be a bit too thin and salty. However, the chile did sting just right and the stew was tasty enough to finish ~ so I did.
I looked over at L. who had opted for a quarter rack of ribs and two sides. He looked happy plowing into his ribs, alternating with nibbles on corn on the cob and garden salad.
L. smiled back at me, looking so pleased with his life.
You’re having such a good time with those ribs, I laughed, anyone would think it was YOUR birthday.
Then he laughed, too, and we both got back down to business.
That’s lunchtime at the Alamogordo Cowboy BBQ, Hitch N Post. Barbecue good enough for a birthday weekend in comfortable, even cheerful, surroundings.