Heading to SXSW? These Are the Top BBQ Joints You Need to Visit According to Location Data

SXSW is starting this weekend and nothing is more synonymous with Austin than BBQ. Think smoked meats and hearty sides like baked beans, corn bread, and mac & cheese – need I say more? As tourists from the tech, music, film, media, and art industries all flock to Austin for the festival, we’ve compiled a list of the most popular BBQ places you’ll want to eat at, plus other insights, all according to location data derived from mobile users.

Winner, winner chicken dinner

While it was tough to do, we narrowed down our list of top BBQ joints to the 11 largest ones in Austin, Texas. We then ranked them by visitation to see who received the most business according to foot traffic by location. And the winner is…

These joints vary in popularity by time of day, though. So, if you’re planning to carve out a full day dedicated to visiting Austin’s best BBQ spot, we suggest your ‘BBQ crawl’ follow this order:

Did you know? Franklin BBQ has the highest morning foot traffic. Locals and tourists line up early to get to this spot, which is only open during lunch hours (11AM-3PM), and often sells out of food long before it closes. On the other hand, Freedman’s sees the highest late-night foot traffic, which makes sense – it’s the only place that stays open until midnight.

Those who travel far and wide for BBQ

Now we know BBQ is hot right now, so couldn’t help but wonder…how far are people willing to travel from to get their hands on this must-have BBQ grub?

While we see a majority of devices coming from the local Austin area, almost half are willing to travel pretty far. It’s safe to say, their food must be pretty good!

In fact, out-of-towners from California, Florida, and New York are the most likely to visit these local BBQ spots. Forget veggies, seafood, and pizza! Those states know what’s good for them!

Have we convinced you yet to visit Austin? We’ll be there all week, so reach out to us to connect with a team member on site. And whether you plan to attend SXSW or not, keep these spots on your radar for the next time you’re in Austin.