A Guide to Asian BBQ and Where to Find It in Collin County


When the brisket is done, as every barbecue-loving Texan knows, the meal begins. It could be Thanksgiving: a turkey is ready to be carved, but no one is called to the table until the breast is cooked. Like any coveted meat, a good beef brisket can be eaten by the slice, savored, or chopped and mixed, enhancing already special dishes with its juiciness, its smoke.

The bánh mí is the barbecue perfection of the world’s sandwich board.

The dragon dumpling burger at The Chinese Neighbor, now open in Prosper and Frisco – Photograph by Kathy Tran

Full disclosure: we like a simple sandwich. Po boys, tortas, cheesesteaks, arepas. Put the freshest meats and cheeses from your market in your favorite bread, dress it with all the vegetables you need and put it on the menu. It will be eaten. With so many global sandwiches to choose from, the Vietnamese take on bánh mí is an easy transition to new foods you may not have tried. That’s why you have to go to Saltlight Station, where you can order a bánh mí with brisket inside.

Breast bánh mí. It makes sense. Saltlight’s Allen location is currently drive-thru only, so you can browse the menu from your car, where you’ll find the meats, the types Texans love, with brisket dancing on the menu. Get the beef brisket bánh mí — on a baguette with a bed of cucumbers, cilantro, pickled carrots, sriracha aioli (with jalapeños on the side) — or dip into the Texas pho, which comes with beef brisket and ribeye.

Collin County isn’t a bad place to start learning about Asian Q. There are great Chinese, Vietnamese, and Korean barbecue options to choose from. And on all of these menus, from high-end spots to no-frills spots, there are elements of what Texans consider barbecue worthy: pork belly, ribs, chicken, more pork, and different types of sausages. . There are menus with designated barbecue sections as well as menus with barbecue scattered throughout. There are traditional dishes as well as fusion.

Sometimes it’s easy to incorporate barbecue into Texas culture. We love meat here, the land of huge trailer-mounted smoke pits. Often at a Texas barbecue, the meat is the point, it’s the star of the dish. This mark in Texas barbecue history can be traced to the Czechs and Germans whose meals centered around meat, these immigrants among a long line of native groups and immigrants who shaped this food.

It’s not hard to find blog posts or stories talking about the differences between American and Asian barbecue. And it’s often said that one main difference is that with Asian Q, the overall flavor of the dish – the vegetables too, y’all – is what’s important. This observation is certainly not wrong, but don’t let anyone tell you that there are no traditional Asian barbecue places that offer meat in the starring role.

For authentic Asian BBQ in Collin County, try these places primo

1501 South Greenville Ave, Allen

3304 Coit Road, Plano

240 Legacy Drive, Suite 308 B, Plano

750, boul. Richland, Prosper
6801 Warren Pkwy #125, Frisco

10424 County Road 1099 Princeton

Discover the first Chinese barbecue. There are several locations in North Texas, including one in Plano. It’s a classic in this category (and it’s cash only, so be prepared). As you enter there are meats hanging behind glass, the first of many promising signs at this place. Whole chickens, duck, various cuts of pork. At Richardson’s location, there was a waitress upstairs taking orders. I drank a glass of water and so much pork. From the BBQ and Marinated Specialties menu, I ordered the BBQ Pork, which only came with rice. The pork was soft. And then I tried the BBQ pork and wonton noodle soup. Whether it was the main flavor of the dish or not, the BBQ pork was flavorful and totally needed, a unique flavor that appears throughout the menu in various roles.

Morefan in Plano – Photograph by Cori Baker

At the Morefan stand on Legacy Drive in Plano, I ordered a sweet and sour pork belly soup. Small slices of pork belly take what looks like a backseat to the other flavors in the bowl, but chewing into the pork belly is tasting all that is right in the piece of meat paired with this fantastic soup.

A few doors down is the new Friendship BBQ. The New York-based chain opened last year and serves Chinese street food-style barbecues. Order skewers of pig’s trotters, quail, lamb, ribs, pork belly, chicken, and other meats. There are also vegetable and seafood skewers. The pork belly and kidney skewers were delicious post-meal snacks. Friendship BBQ is essentially the Buffalo Wild Wings of Asian BBQ, not just because it’s a
channel or the color scheme is black and yellow – it’s the huge TV behind the bar tuned to any sport. Eat barbecue skewers and sip renowned Asian beers like Sapporo and watch the game. (What game? Who cares. Just watch it.) It sounds like a plan, which obviously has the potential to evolve.

In Collin County, there are regional chains, major chains, and local chains. There’s even a Filipino deli near Princeton, Texas outside of Frisco that serves lechón, or spit-roasted pig. Across the state, critics note an expansion of Texas barbecue, with brisket bento boxes available in Austin and brisket ramen in Arlington.

Lechón comme ça from ORC Filipino Asian/American BBQ – MARk Kenneth Salita | Shutterstock

In the true spirit of saving the best for last, perhaps the best place for Asian Q in Collin County is The Chinese Neighbor. From Executive Chef Bob Tam, The Chinese Neighbor offers true American-Chinese fusion, not just Americanized Chinese cuisine, and the results are a fun, casual menu with riffs on fish and chips, mac and cheese and salad. Caesar. By far the best offering on the menu is the dragon ball burger. This blend of two popular comfort foods is everything The Chinese Neighbor is all about. The patty is formed from the same marinated ground beef and pork that fills chili wontons. It’s topped with melty Swiss and American cheeses, caramelized onions and kewpie mayonnaise.

Please note that we’re not trying to drive you away from your favorite barbecue restaurant, or discourage you from trying the new Texas Q. We’re just trying to broaden your horizons. While you won’t be heading to Asia anytime soon, you can get to Asian cuisine without venturing too far from home.


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