The owners of Terry Black’s BBQ are no strangers to controversy, particularly when it comes to their uncle Kent, who owns Black’s Barbecue.
Black’s Barbecue in Lockhart is having a bad week. On the heels of a report from the U.S. Department of Labor that the longstanding barbecue restaurant owed $230,353 in back wages for withholding tips from employees, there’s some new competition in town. Terry Black’s BBQ, owned and operated by the twin nephews of Black’s pitmaster Kent Black, has finally opened its Lockhart location on Friday, and they started off by throwing shade at their uncle.
“Another 230,353 reasons you should eat at Terry Black’s BBQ,” the sign reads, a direct reference to the exact dollar amount their new neighbors, Black’s Barbecue, was fined.
The bad blood started in 2013, when Mark and Mike Black planned to open Black’s Austin. But before the first brisket hit the pit, Kent hit his nephews with a cease-and-desist letter, forcing a name change to Terry Black’s, named after Kent’s brother (and Mark and Mike’s father) Terry. After opening in 2014, the brothers poked at their uncle for using rotisserie smokers at Black’s, utilizing the #nogassers hashtag. It appears the feud continues. MySA has reached out to Terry Black’s BBQ and Black’s Barbecue for comment.
In August, the brothers told reporters that they were expanding not just to Lockhart, but to Driftwood and perhaps beyond. Earlier in the summer, they purchased a former Elks lodge at 700 Dawson Road without solid plans of what the property would be.
“I think our growth plan is to buy real estate,” Mark Black said in August. “If Terry Black’s fits in that property, that’s great. If not, we want to do other hospitality projects — hotels, clubs, smaller restaurants — that add value to the community and kind of keep it unique to that area.”
Terry Black’s Lockhart is now open at 900 N Colorado St., Lockhart, TX 78644, from Thursday through Sunday.
Chris O’Connell covers all things Austin. He can be found @theechrisoc.