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If you're a resident of the small city of Porterville, CA, and you're in the mood for some authentic, Texas-style barbecue, you don't need to travel all the way to Texas, as you're blessed with Anvil BBQ, which serves delicious barbecue, smoked, Texas-style.

As with all of reviews that I publish, I have no affiliation with the restaurant reviewed, and there is no monetary gain on my part, as I am simply a person who likes to eat, and I love to write-up, and publish my dining experiences.

Photo:  The Anvil BBQ is located at the end of the row, in the "Town and Country Shopping Center, on Olive Ave., in the beautiful town of Porterville, CA.  Yes, that's a Texas-style smoker outside in the parking lot, where the meat is smoked over oak.  It's around 1730 in the afternoon of Wednesday, September 11, 2019, and I'm in the mood for barbecue!

Photo:  The wood-fired smoker is just outside the restaurant, and takes up a couple of very worthwhile spaces in the parking lot.  Next to the smoker is lots of oak, which grows native in the Porterville area, and makes for great smoking wood.  Oak is very similar to hickory, and totally interchangeable.  At my home in Roseville, CA, I smoke with oak, as it's native, and all I have to do is to gather dead branches, take them home, and cut them to size with my chain saw.

Since it's late in the afternoon, all of the meat has been smoked, and brought into the kitchen.  That's the way it works with a REAL barbecue restaurant, as the meat is smoked in a batch, and the smoker is shut down for the day.  Occasionally, if you arrive late, the restaurant may be out of a certain cut of meat, so when I'm in the mood to enjoy REAL, "old school" barbecue, I arrive early.

Photo:  The dining room is long and narrow, and furnished with picnic tables, just the way a barbecue restaurant should be.  The restaurant works on what I call the "taqueria format," in that you walk up to the, make your selection from the menu, pay for your order, and when your order is ready, it will be brought to you.

Barbecue is an informal food, and I prefer to enjoy barbecue in an informal dining room, such as Anvil BBQ.  As much as I enjoy a full-service restaurant, I don't think "full service" applies when it comes to barbecue.  Anvil's dining room would make a Texas barbecue joint proud...

Photo:  This gentleman ponders the menu, that's on the wall behind the counter, and above the window to the kitchen.  There are a couple of television monitors where a baseball game is in progress, and a small salad bar. The scale to the right is to weigh meat for sale, as Anvil BBQ sells smoked meat by the pound for take-home.

Photo:  The "BBQ Rules" that Anvil's adheres to are posted on the wall.  If you've never been to an informal barbecue restaurant, now you know what to expect.

Photo:  Anvil BBQ's menu is very simple, to the point, and pure barbecue.  The menu is posted above the counter, on an "old school" blackboard, and I didn't see any printed menus during my visit.  This posted photo is courtesy of Anvil BBQ's "Facebook" page, as I give them the credit for the photo.

Photo:  A peek over the counter and through the window to the kitchen catches the chef in action, as he prepares my delicious meal.

Photo: Meet friendly Alex, who brings my meal to me with a smile.  Anvil BBQ isn't a full-service, "sit-down" restaurant, but when your order is ready, it will be brought to you.

Photo:  Thanks, Alex, for taking my photo, as I get ready to enjoy some of the best barbecue the southern San Joaquin Valley has to offer.  Note the roll of paper towels - you'll need them - along with the two varieties of in-house made barbecue sauce.  One is mild, the other medium-spicy, and both are described as delicious.  I went for the spicier variety on my sandwich, which proved to be an outstanding condiment.

Photo:  From the "Sandwiches" section of the menu, I ordered a "Large Pulled Pork," and  I added two optional sides;  "BBQ Baked Beans" and "Potato Salad."  

The large sandwich features a generous helping of delicious, juicy, tender, smoky pulled pork, cooked to perfection in the outdoor smoker.  Yes, it's Texas-style, but if you're a fan of Carolina-style barbecue, where pulled pork is king, you'd love this pork, as it's SO GOOD!  The pork was served on a toasted garlic roll, which made for an outstanding sandwich.  I added a little of the spicy in-house made barbecue sauce on my sandwich, and after taking my first bite, I was transported to "barbecue nirvana."  Great barbecue!

The side of potato salad was delicious, and is some of the best potato salad that I've enjoyed in a long time, but the beans were the real winner!  I'm a fan of beans of any variety, especially baked beans.  These beans aren't your mama's baked beans, as they're not baked in a casserole, as they have lots of bean juice, with chunks of barbecue been in them.  The beans were juicy, flavorful and tender, and I absolutely loved them!  If you're a lover of beans, like I am, do yourself a favor and order a side of beans.

If you've ever wanted to enjoy authentic, Texas-style barbecue, at a restaurant that would be right home in the Texas hill country, but you don't want to travel to Texas, do your taste buds a favor and pay a visit to Anvil BBQ, located in Porterville, CA.  You'll love the barbecue!

The Anvil BBQ
1302 W. Olive Ave.
Porterville, CA 93257
559 784-2991

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