The Tale of Franklin, Mueller & Lewis

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Y’all ever wonder about Aaron Franklin, John Mueller and John Lewis? Well, let me tell you the tale of three Texas Barbecue Greats…in song of course.

Mueller and Lewis photos from Robert Lerma.


Well this song’ll start with Aaron, of Franklin Barbecue
A hipster idol meat man with a line to Timbuktu
Well his brisket’s made Food & Wine, folks lined up for days
And thus began the nationwide Texas barbecue craze
Well next we got John Mueller, that ole’ surly sonuvabitch
Transformed a simple beef rib into a gourmet dish
Black pepper, oak and patience were the secrets of his trade
You’ll find him in East Austin, slingin’ smoked meat to this day

Our third man is John Lewis, a barbecue prodigy
He truly is the wunderkind of Texas gastronomy
Give him any cut of pork or beef and see what he can do
He’ll cook it better’n you can dream, I guarantee that’s true

Now here’s where the story gets interesting

Few years ago, ole’ Mueller was cookin’ on Manor Road
When insanity and drinkin’, forced his shop to close
His pit went to his assistant, which was Aaron if y’all don’t know
And Aaron opened up on 51st with Mueller’s pit in tow

Now Aaron wanted Lewis to come in and run the pit
So Lewis came and brought his magic, Franklin was a hit
In the meantime ole’ John Mueller opened back up in the south
Crankin’ out them beef ribs to feed the hungry mouths

Son, nothin’ lasts forever, Aaron and Lewis had to part
See, Mueller recognized the talent, hired Lewis at his cart
For a short time all was well in the world of barbecue
Yeah, nothin’ lasts forever son, like I just told you

Then one day, a fight broke out between Mueller and his boss
Accusations flew like arrows, cheap shots and chaos
Mueller packed up, opened shop on the other side of town
That left Lewis as the man in charge to hold that legacy down

Out of chaos and confusion, a miracle was found
The best three cooks in America are in the same damn town
Aaron, Lewis and Mueller, three Texas barbecue greats
I don’t know what their futures hold, but I can’t wait to taste their fate

4 thoughts on “The Tale of Franklin, Mueller & Lewis”

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