Tag Archives: Barbecue

A Thought (or two) on Barbecue

And you people said I couldn’t write poetry. Did you see that clever rhyming title up there? Pretty poetic, eh?

Poetry doesn’t rhyme anymore, stupid. As some of you know (and some of you don’t know, but I’m about to reveal), I’m kinda crazy about BBQ. I love the stuff. But first let me lay out to you what I think BBQ is: Pig. BBQ should be pig. BBQ does not “Moo!” or “Cluck!” or “Nay!” (though BBQ’d horse sounds interesting, what with my longstanding disdain for horses and horsekind {meat and weapons-testing, I say!}).

That’s speciesist! Maybe so, but for me, the ultimate test for BBQ is a pulled pork sandwich. And no, not the sauce. I feel like good BBQ should not need sauce (though there is a place for it … just it shouldn’t need it), and it should be tender and spicy, with a hint of sweetness and varied textures on its own.

OK, we get it. You like BBQ. Way to go. Well, here’s the thing. I’ve been doing a lot of traveling of late, and I have to say that I’ve not been blown away at all by the BBQ in the South. I’ve been to cities in Georgia, as well as Nashville, Memphis, and others, and the BBQ places that people seem to rave about are, I dunno, decent at best. They always seem to be at these fast-food sort of joints that serve decent BBQ (not amazing, but good) on cheap white buns on paper plates.

I figured the South would be chock-full of amazing BBQ, but I don’t feel like it is (unless I’m missing something). I mean, some of the best BBQ I’ve had is from Detroit at Slow’s BBQ (though they are guilty of calling “Moo” and “Cluck” BBQ). My brother Seth also made some of the best BBQ I’ve had in his smoker the last time I visited him (It makes me want to buy a smoker… or try making the Alton Brown homemade smoker).

Keep talking, Yankee! I guess I’m saying that I’ve been disappointed by the BBQ I’ve been exposed to in my visits to the South. Sure, I don’t know it very well. I don’t know these cities. I don’t know the little hole-in-the-wall places. But I had this dream in my head that BBQ joints in the South were like breweries in Michigan. Maybe they are, and I’m missing ‘em. But thus far in my travels, I’m not finding amazing BBQ.

If I’m wrong, correct me. Tell me where to go. I’m desperate to find it.

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