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By Margo Tovar, Jesse Cortez and Destinée Flores

On San Antonio’s South Side of town, not only can you find national historical parks but locally owned eateries, as well. One of the well-known missions, Mission Espada, is located at 10040 Espada Road, once housed Franciscan missionaries who taught masonry and carpentry skills to Native Americans.

By visiting Mission Espada, you will be taken on a path that embraces inactive irrigation ditches, worn down paths, a chapel, and the entire craftsmanship of Spanish culture dating back 281 years.

After absorbing the serene civilization, travel to the heart of San Antonio’s South Side for authentic oak-smoked barbeque. At 2627 Pleasanton Road between Sussex and Sunglo, you will find B & B Smokehouse. Owned by San Antonio Native Bruce Finley, B & B is well known for excellent barbeque at a reasonable price.

Once you pull into the parking lot, you are immediately greeted by the luscious aroma of the smoke Finley creates to cook his assortment of meats. Customer favorites include the Po’ boys, succulent ribs, brisket, sausage and chicken.

The brisket is smoked anywhere from 12 to 20 hours, and you can actually taste the oak in the brisket. Dab on a bit of barbeque sauce, and you’ve got gold.  As for the ribs, they are smoked for 6 hours and obtain an incredibly juicy flavor. The meat practically falls off the bone and leaves you wanting more. The sides offered are creamed corn, beans, green beans, rice, cole slaw, fries and the “best potato salad in town.” Finley challenged us to find better.

For vegetarians, options are available, too. Finley and his staff have fresh-tossed salads with homemade dressings that are sure to satisfy your appetite. Not a barbeque fan? Hamburgers, chalupas and nachos are also on the menu, along with chicken nuggets for the kids.  Quench your thirst with B & B’s freshly brewed signature sweet tea, because it’ll surely hit the spot.

Finley has hosted many big names from all over the state, including local news anchors, reporters, actors, singers and many more. When asked who was his most famous guest, Finley replied, “My everyday customer!”

So make your way to B & B Smokehouse for a taste of Texas. Their operating hours are Mondays through Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Their phone number is (210) 921-2745.