*TC L CHUCK WAGON BAR-B-QUE 1690-B Annapolis Road (Route 175), Odenton. Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Mondays to Thursdays, 11 a.m.-midnight Fridays and Saturdays, closed Sundays. Phone: (410) 551-6340.
The secret to the delicious Southwestern barbecue at this Odenton carryout is the special sauce (all natural ingredients). Owner Don German boasts that the sauce was developed in the mid-1860s by a cook on the Texas-Kansas Chisholm Trail. The tender but meaty spareribs are roasted slowly (never parboiled or steamed) over hickory logs in an enclosed pit, basted every half hour and then served crispy with a side of the sauce.
Located on state Route 175, about halfway between the Baltimore-Washington Parkway and Route 32, the Chuck Wagon attracts ribs and barbecue fans from Fort Meade, which is right across the road, and from the nearby National Security Agency. While it caters to the carryout crowd, there are more than enough tables for those who want to stay.