Riscky’s in Fort Worth celebrates 95 years of barbecue

Fort Worth’s second-oldest restaurant celebrates its anniversary on Thursday, October 20. The barbecue restaurant turns 95, and its owners say that makes it the second-oldest restaurant in town. There aren’t many restaurants that have kept their doors open since 1927. Eddie Sullivan, who has co-owned with Jim and Norma Riscky since 2005, told Eater Dallas that serving the best quality meat and everything they can get at the lowest possible price, this is the key to success. “I even say our bottled water, artesian well [is the best]says Sullivan.

“I never try to hit anyone, but people always call themselves artisanal and come up with these new terms,” Sullivan told Eater Dallas. “Our product is certified Angus briskets, just like any other artisan or call it what you want. We just make a larger quantity. We sell over a million pounds of smoked meat a year. I’ll put our chest against anyone’s chest.

During Riscky’s birthday celebration on Thursday, guests are invited to a free event from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Fort Worth Stockyards restaurant (140 E. Exchange Avenue), featuring free barbecue samples, beer and gifts including an overnight stay in the Stockyards. Additionally, select menu items will be 95 cents all day, including the ground beef sandwich, pulled pork sandwich, beef and pork ribs (per rib), brisket tacos (per taco), fried pickles, Texas fries, sodas, tea and a pint of domestic beer.

Riscky’s all-you-can-eat beef ribs.

That’s not to say Riscky hasn’t changed over time. To appeal to the next generation of barbecue lovers, Sullivan says he’s added items like seared brisket, brisket bites and fried pickles to the menu. “I think people who grew up here in Fort Worth and have been coming to Riscky’s for years love our barbecue,” Sullivan says.

A pair of Polish immigrants, Mary and Joe Riscky, opened the first location, Riscky’s Grocery & Market, at 2314 Azle Avenue. Sullivan explains that the deli counter is still in operation and serves chopped sandwiches at the “really good price” of four for $5.

Like many other restaurants, Sullivan says the biggest challenge Riscky’s faces today is continuing to get the products they need at a price good enough to continue saving money for their customers. He hopes they’ve locked away enough turkey to get through Christmas. And he says the hunt for the best ranches to get beef is still on, but as long as they can get beef brisket for a decent price, customers should expect top quality at the best price.

“We also have all-you-can-eat prime rib, which is very popular,” Sullivan says — and it’s every day, not just on his birthday.

About James Almanza

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