Savouring the Best Meat in KL
Good things take time. Like cooking for example, when made with love and patience, it will result in a grand celebration of flavor. The cooking process for Texas-style barbecue is something that resonates well with that.
If you think about it, a barbecue is an art form. It takes a lot of time, requires a great deal of patience, a lot of love and mostly passion. In the end, it becomes a masterpiece of perfectly seasoned marbled slices of meat so tender they fall apart as you pick them up. And that smoky aroma just gives it that extra kick, it’s a meat lover’s dream come true.
Founder of a Texas styled bbq restaurant called Beard Brothers in Malaysia, Nazri Jameson said that Texas-style bbq is unlike any other food when it comes to the cooking process.
“To prepare the meat, it takes about 4-6 hours. We only cook with fire, and we don’t use gas or electricity. The cooking process in total takes about 14 hours for all types of meat we have here, except lamb ribs as the meat is much smaller compared to brisket,” said Nazri.
At Beard Brothers, the restaurant offers patrons a selection of meat from brisket, lamb, ribs, and chicken. He added that the meat is cooked using wood native to Malaysia, like rubberwood.
“The brisket is huge and it’s got a lot of fat in it. To break all that intricate fibers inside, you have to cook it low and slow. It needs a low temperature every time. If you try to sleep while you do it, you’re going to spoil the food. You must constantly maintain the temperature.
“That’s what makes it (Texas-style bbq) different. There are very few people who can do this daily, it takes a certain kind of crazy to do it,” he chuckled.
Beard Brothers have been around for about 5 years. “Before I started this, I was a chef in training. I was looking for something to do and that was when my brother-in-law told me to look into barbecue.
“I thought it would be easy. But when I did my homework, I found that it wasn’t easy at all. I wasted about 160kg of meat just to get things perfect before I could sell it.
“I wasted a lot of finances. It took me about 5-6 months to perfect the recipe for the marinade. I just wanted it to be perfect,” he said.
In the early days of Beard Brothers, Nazri operated out of his wife’s grandmother’s house.
“The setup was just like a warung (a Malaysian word used to describe a small café or restaurant set up with limited seating) I had a small metal table, with one or two chairs and that was it,” he said.
But with the power of word of mouth, people kept coming and day by day, his customer base grew rapidly. He also started doing online deliveries.
Business picked up and eventually about 2 years ago, Beard Brothers BBQ transitioned from operating from his wife’s family home to a proper commercial lot in Tropicana Avenue, Petaling Jaya.
Their social media presence is pretty solid too, with about 36.8k followers on their Instagram page. “I’m quite proud to say that Beard Brothers BBQ never paid for any sort of followers at all. It’s based on the people who share the same love for bbq,” he said.
Owning his own restaurant, was something he never imagined would happen. “I mean, I needed to sell to make a living, but it wasn’t just about the money. It was purely about just getting the bbq right. I just wanted to share the same love that I have for food with others,” said Nazri.
When Nazri started out with the Texas-style bbq, Malaysians weren’t too aware of this style of barbecue. Despite knowing this, Nazri persevered anyway and the thing that kept him going was simply his obsession with getting the recipe right.
“I wasn’t too concerned if people were going to like it, I was concerned if I was going to like it. As selfish as it sounds, I wanted it to be perfect for me. Because if it’s perfect for me, hopefully, I could make it perfect for everybody else,” he said.
While the original Texas-style bbq is often seasoned with salt and pepper, Nazri, who understands that Malaysian’s palette has ‘Malaysianised’ the recipe by adding a mixture of seasonings and herbs otherwise known as Beard Brother’s secret recipe.
On average, Beard Brothers BBQ cooks more than 100kg of meat on the daily. “Our meat is sourced from Australia. Every meat here is treated with individual respect. Special attention is given to every meat because you have to acknowledge that every cow is different. Every season the cows are in different sizes. With this, we have to do a bit of study so that every time we cook, we are always giving the best for our guests,” he said.
From the barbecue pit, Beard Brothers BBQ churns out various dishes that will satisfy meat lovers. They have platters for one person or bigger ones to share. Typically on a platter, you can choose your choice of meat, with a few side dishes like a potato bun, cornbread, honey butter biscuit, coleslaw, or mashed potatoes. Oh, and before we forget, Beard Brothers BBQ grind and make their own sausages too!
Bread Brothers treated Salamtoday to a platter of beef brisket, beef rib, mashed potatoes, coleslaw, woody chippy (chips) and a potato bun. The mixture of herbs and seasoning and the juicy, succulent meat was a pure delight. May we say, the mash potatoes were finger-licking good!
Beard Brothers BBQ has also expanded its business and has added a deli beside its bbq restaurant which serves a different selection of food if you’re not all about that barbecue.
The newly opened deli serves a range of sandwiches and ramen. Why ramen? “Because I love my noodles,” said Nazri.
The menu offers 3 types of ramen – seafood, beef, and chicken. The broth is beautifully cooked and so rich with flavor, it’s super satisfying for noodle lovers.
“The ramen broth is a little different from what you typically find in Japan. Ramen is a huge broad spectrum. You can add a lot of things. You need your bones, dashi, and seasoning, but I didn’t want to go down that road.
“I’m trying to give respect to the Japanese way of cooking by using my flavors. It’s a good marriage of flavor and culture. It’s not Japanese, it’s part barbecue part Japanese. It’s Malaysian,” he said.
Meanwhile, the sandwiches are drool worthy themselves. We devoured into four types of sandwiches, the BB New York Pastrami, London Salt Beef, Chicken Katsu, and Pulled Beef. It’s safe to say, we’d come back for more.
While the barbecued meat goes through a long process of cooking, the dishes at the deli are quite the same. For example, the ramen broth takes about 10 hours to cook, and the meat for the sandwiches takes about 2 weeks to cure.
“We open this place to make it easy for people to eat food that is hard to make. We put in all the work for you, all you have to do is come here and ask for it.
“Food back then took time and it took some love. That’s what we’re bringing back here,” he said.
For more information check out Beard Brothers BBQ:
Facebook: Beard Brothers’ BBQ
Address: P-G-01, Persiaran Tropicana, Tropicana Avenue, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia 47410