Since October of last year, new owners of Dickinson Bar~B~Que & Steakhouse Keith and Holly Lilley have taken great care in creating a Hill Country environment right here in the Galveston Bay Area. From little touches to the stylized Fredericksburg décor to mouth-watering, scratch-made recipes, the Lilleys have reshaped the establishment into a one-of-a-kind, family dining destination. Choice cuts at reasonable prices and super-friendly customer service round out the experience at this family owned and operated restaurant.
Former president of Southwestern food chain giant, Café Express, Keith Lilley is no stranger to the food service industry. Leaving his secure position in an effort to fuel his entrepreneurial spirit, Lilley immediately jumped at the opportunity for self-employment in his own back yard. Taking a hands-on approach, customers will frequently see the apron-clad owners buzzing around the restaurant greeting guests and serving food, ensuring a quality dining experience in a relaxed, casual atmosphere.
The palette available at Dickinson Bar~B~Que is distinctive and plentiful. It’s Texas Bar~B~Que is uniquely slow-pecan roasted, providing a mild, sweet flavor. Using the indigenous state tree gives the smoked meats a genuine Texas feel, packed with rich, complex flavors. Meats include slow smoked sliced or chopped brisket, St. Louis rack ribs, Czech sausage, turkey breast and ham. Paired with its regular sauce gives the meat a spicy kick; though a milder sauce is available for a more traditional style and in the works is a hickory sauce, which will use local wildflower honey.
Not your typical Bar~B~Que joint, Dickinson Bar~B~Que is a full-fledged steakhouse as well, offering hand cut USDA Choice Rib Eye and New York Strip steaks, center cut pork chops, and Norwegian salmon filets. Angus burgers are also available; along with a variety of sandwiches. Homestyle cooking options for those looking for comfort food include hand battered chicken fried steak or chicken, chicken tenders, steak fingers and a catfish platter.
A plethora of fresh, homemade side dishes are also available and include your basics like cole slaw, potato salad, green beans and baked beans; but also items like jalapeño pinto beans, black eyed peas, macaroni salad, turnip greens, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, twice baked potatoes, real mac & cheese and other daily and seasonal specials. Add on a garden salad topped with dressings made in-house or a bowl of a fresh made soup for a full meal. Some daily soups include sausage chicken gumbo, chicken tortilla, and homemade chicken and dumplings. And with a chef devoted solely to creating an assortment of scratch-made pies, cakes, cobblers, bread and banana pudding, you’ll certainly want to leave room for dessert!
Family friendly, Dickinson Bar~B~Que offers “Little Whipper Snapper” meals available for the kiddos for about the cost of a Happy Meal; and there’s exterior picnic tables so you and your family can enjoy the weather outside. Serving food cafeteria-style allows the entire family to sit back and relax and it saves money all around. And you won’t want to leave after hearing an eclectic musical mix of old, classic country, Texas rock and blues.
For adults, a selection of domestic and imported beer and wine are available. Having toured Hill Country wineries extensively, Lilley features some of the finest Texas wines available―including Blanc du Bois from Santa Fe’s own Haak Vineyards. The museum-like front dining room―complete with red cedar ceiling, handmade shutter boxes and artwork by local muralist Gary Holman—can be shut off from the rest of the restaurant and is the perfect Hill Country setting for wine tastings, private gatherings and special events.
No time to dine-in or need food for a special occasion? Call ahead and pick up your food through the convenient drive-thru where you’ll see another amazing Holman mural along the entire west side of the building. And be sure to consider Dickinson Bar~B~Que when catering your event―some past clients include the Galveston County Fair & Rodeo, Krewe of Gambinus Float Parade, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Mainland Chapter CCA End of Year Banquet, and the Dickinson Strawberry Festival.
Dickinson Bar~B~Que is a member of the GO TEXAN Club, promoting the products, culture and communities that call Texas home. Find out more information and see a full menu with prices at www.DickinsonBBQ.com. Be sure to join their “e-Que Club” and you might get a little something special as a token of their appreciation. Add them on Facebook to keep up with news and events and to check out pictures (my favorite album is “Dads at Dinner”). The restaurant is located at 2111 FM 517 E in Dickinson and they can be reached at 281-534-2500.
Originally published in The SCENE Magazine – June 2010