Anyone who’s ever met me knows I’m a born and bred Texan (to be fair it’s because I met most of those people IN Texas, but I’m also pretty vocal about it up here in D.C.). I made the choice to move up here almost exactly eight years ago, and for the most part it’s worked out pretty well. That being said, there are definitely times when I feel an overwhelming homesickness. Usually it happens when I watch Friday Night Lights and realize I’m nowhere near fulfilling my dream of becoming Tami Taylor.

Every once in a while I come across something up here that kind of has the reverse effect. Something that brings a little bit of Texas to DC, and I have to say, when I find those places, it’s all I can do not to just pack up and move in. The place up here that comes closest to re-creating home (at least the closest I’ve found so far) is Hill Country BBQ.

I love this place. The food is on the pricy side, but it’s good, and the portions are generous. What I love about it though is how much nostalgia it invokes in me. It’s not that it looks like a restaurateur’s (and yes, I had to use the googles to figure out how to spell that) idea of what a Texas restaurant might look like, but it’s like walking off 7th street and right into Hill Country. I may be overstating it, high on BBQ sauce and iced tea, ¬†or just driven crazy for want of Texas, but they have nailed the atmosphere.

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It doesn’t necessarily replace home, but if I could have my mail forwarded here and live curled up next to the smoker, I totally would. And, as though they needed to win me over, when I ordered a banana pudding to go, they gave it to me in a tiny mason jar:

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It’s like they want me to stay forever!

I know it’s weird to write what amounts to a love letter to a place that reminds me of the place I left, so I’ll leave you with this quote from Texas journalist, essayist and playwright Larry L. King. It perfectly sums up how I feel about things that remind me of the Lone Star State:

“For a few precious moments…I am back in Old Texas, under a high sky, where all things are again possible and the wind blows free.”

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