EAT This Week: Bear Beach BBQ’s Brisket Sandwich

This week’s featured EAT dish is Bear Beach BBQ’s Brisket Sandwich.
Robert Galloway/Tahoe Daily Tribune

To try and decide each week where and what to eat around the basin can be a challenge — there are so many amazing choices. In this feature we’ll dive into dishes that will surely satisfy those hunger pangs and leave you wondering where to go next.

If you are an impatient person, then cooking beef brisket probably isn’t for you. Thankfully, there are places like Bear Beach that are taking the long arduous process and cooking it low and slow and slathering it in barbecue sauce for us to eat.

The thing about brisket is that it takes a while to break it down and tenderize it. The process starts here with an eight-hour brine, which helps the meat to retain more moisture during cooking. From there, it gets the chef’s super secret rub and then thrown in the smoker between 12 to 14 hours. I did push for just a general idea of spices in the rub, but it’s on complete lock down and I wasn’t prepared to sign my soul over in blood so you’ll just have to figure it out on your own.

Once it emerges from its smoke bath, it gets sliced and stacked on a slightly grilled and buttered brioche bun along with tomato and onion rings, then draped in barbecue sauce. It’s served with a side of arugula and whole potato fries (hand cut fresh fries).

I’m a big arugula fan — I love that tangy and peppery bite it brings to the party — so I added it to my sandwich before diving in. The sandwich is like two feet tall, so if you want it all to fit in your mouth, you just have to smash it down before shoving it your face and accept the fact that you might get a little messy — which, if you’re into barbecue, you should have no problem with.

The meat is succulent and tender with great textures coming in from the crispy onion rings, juicy tomato and crisp arugula. The barbecue sauce seeps into each bite giving you that punctuation mark you’re looking for.

Don’t sleep on the fries, either. They have just the right amount of salt to satisfy your taste buds without going over the top.

Speaking of your taste buds, this dish is a great option for getting them into shape for the summer grilling season – you know, once it stops snowing.

Bear Beach BBQ Restaurant & Bar is located at 3310 Lake Tahoe Boulevard in South Lake Tahoe. For menu and further information visit them online at or by phone at 530-618-8701.

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