This Brewery-Exclusive Barbecue Pop-up Is Changing the Game—What the Ale!

Brenda and Danny Castillo huddle up behind Bruery Terreux’s alley for a recent pop-up. Photo by Greg Nagel

““They’ve completely ruined all other barbecue for me,” says Riip Beer Co.’s Ryan Rasmussen of Heritage Barbecue’s central Texas style. “We’ve had them here for an event, and the amount of people they brought in was insane.”

The ’cue he’s talking about is one of the best things to hit the OC beer scene since Hazy IPA releases: huge hunks of bark-rubbed meat and sides, anticipated by a long line of people who arrive well before the brewery opens.

“I won’t wait in line for beer, but I’ll wait for this,” notes one customer, who showed up almost two hours before service.

A thick bark crusts the central Texas-style brisket from Heritage. Photo by Greg Nagel

“I’m a big local craft beer guy and have been going to all these breweries for the past few years,” says Heritage founder/pit master Danny Castillo. “I like to incorporate a lot of their beer into the menu, which is what got me interested in doing pop-ups at breweries.”

The regular brewery circuit currently includes Green Cheek, Bruery Terreux, Gunwhale and Riip Beer Co. Heritage also appeared at Docent’s anniversary party.

For size reference, the beef rib on top is more than 3 inches thick. Photo by Greg Nagel

“It takes a week to prep for a pop-up, and on Monday, I’ll start prepping the sauces. . . . Today, I’m using the Bruery’s So Happens It’s Tuesday in my sauce, so I call it beerbecue sauce,” Castillo says with a laugh.

I’ve never seen such a phenomenon. “It gets ridiculous sometimes,” says Castillo. “It’s like a party.”

Follow Heritage Barbecue on Instagram: @heritagebarbecue.

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