The brisket. It's a fickle thing that almost always turns out good. Honestly, I've had bad brisket that was still pretty OK. It's the amazing brisket that separates the men from the Texans... And in terms of smoked brisket, Texans are the only ones that can do it right.

Arron Franklin is the owner and smoker of Franklin BBQ in Austin, TX. It's been repeatedly voted #1 BBQ in Texas, which means it's the best BBQ in the entire world. And it's shocking how much emphasis he puts on the simple things. Little salt, little pepper, and oddly enough, he smokes with oak. That's odd because mesquite and hickory are the traditional woods, but we'll indulge. He makes the best BBQ in the world, he can't be wrong.

Don't go throwing your own little spin on it either... It shouldn't taste like vinegar. To the people of North and South Carolina, that's not BBQ. It also shouldn't be sticky and messy, covered in sauce that you've spent hours basting and junk... that ain't BBQ either. That's the amateur attempt you can find in any lame BBQ shack outside of Texas and Oklahoma. Salt, pepper, smoke. Stick to it.

Speaking of sauce. You're more than welcome to dip your perfect meat in a tasty sauce, but reaching for the sweet stuff is just sad. Big brands like KC Masterpiece, Kraft, Stubb's, Sweet Baby Ray's, Bulls Eye, ect... don't know a thing about BBQ. That's just sugar sauce. Get yourself a respectable condiment that won't require a punch to your man card. Pick up a bottle of Head Country Hickory, Head Country Hot, or surprisingly, Rib Crib sells their amazing hot sauce too that balances heat with sweet. Those are your choices. Don't make the rookie mistake by purchasing "What we always get."