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Tennessee Chain Will Try to Make Memphis-Style Barbecue a Thing in Houston

Corky’s BBQ is set to arrive this year

Think pork ribs, not beef brisket
Corky’s BBQ/Facebook
Amy McCarthy is a reporter at, focusing on pop culture, policy and labor, and only the weirdest online trends.

Tennessee-based chain Corky’s BBQ is plotting an expansion into Texas, and Houston is set to get the first of many forthcoming locations.

The family-owned Memphis chain has enlisted a franchisee to bring Corky’s BBQ to “up to three” locations in Houston this year, reports the Memphis Daily News, and there could eventually be more outposts. The chain was founded in 1984 in Memphis, and has since expanded to multiple locations in Tennessee and Arkansas while racking up plenty of accolades in its home city. In addition to Houston, Corky’s is also planning to make a push into Dallas-Fort Worth.

For the uninitiated, Memphis-style barbecue differs from Texas-style primarily in protein choice — pork instead of beef. Corky’s smokes its meats over hickory and charcoal, according to the restaurant’s website. Brisket is on the menu, but the real focus is on ribs and pulled pork, which is piled onto nachos and sandwiches, even served alongside a helping of Corky’s spaghetti. If pairing pork and spaghetti seems like a bizarre combination, that’s because it is.

In Houston, Corky’s BBQ will have to battle it out with the growing bounty of Texas-born barbecue restaurants when the chain’s makes its debut later this year. The first location is expected to arrive before September.