Last food thread for awhile, promise…I love any quality BBQ and all the types listed, but NC East (the vinegar based) is my fav.
Oh, yeah. This will end well.
Wait until the chili thread.
What we have some BBQ groupies here?
Just a few, yeah.
Again I love it all so what-evah.
Order of Preference:
Whatever is in front of me
Western North Carolina (Lexington #1!)
Texas, Lockhart, (Smitty’s)
Eastern North Carolina, Shelby (Bridge’s)
Kansas City (Gates)
Santa Maria-style tri-tip
Then everybody else. There are a number of places on my list to get to, mostly in Texas.
Western Ky barbecue, all the way.
Then Lexington style, then SC mustard sauce, with the other types trailing waaaaaaay behind.
Grew up with Memphis, so I’ll always love it, but now that I’m doing my own BBQ from rubs to sauces and even curing, I do like the Carolina styles a lot. That vinegary tang really plays off of a super savory piece of meat like a sloooooow-smoked Boston butt.
I highly recommend Steve Raichlen’s book that’s dedicated just to sauces, rubs, and marinades.
I eat Eastern Style Q, but the Lexington heretic sauce is OK. I was not impressed with Memphis style “BBQ”
What about Owensoboro mutton barbecue?
I picked NC east, but any of the Carolinas will do.
I picked NC East, because the only Carolina is East Carolina. That mustard based stuff is an abomination, and the less said about that tomato flavored corn syrup the better. Today I’m doing a couple of briskets for a change, but normally it’s dry rubbed slow cooked Boston Butts.
I like it all, but NC is my favorite. I am not familiar with the difference between east and west NC.
I am becoming an almost exclusive pork proponent. I have never had beef brisket that matched a good pork butt.
Lol Yeah, better alert the medical staff. Somebody’s gonna end up getting hurt.
ETA: I’m a Texas boy.
Let’s talk smoke too!
I started with hickory and apple, but now I’m using a lot of oak with pecan. I’ve done some experimental stuff too like smoking with a ton of saved up pistachio shells. It was slightly nutty tasting if you’re wondering. If I repeated it, I would shoot for an Asian style Q as that nut flavor profile would fit nicely in that cuisine.
I usually do a mix of white oak with a little bit of hickory for flavor. I’ve also recently become quite fond of maple. For me, the equation is fairly simple. I start with some mild woods for the base smoke flavor (like oak, apple, or maple or, more often, a mixture of these), and then I add hickory for a little bit of “bite.” Even more sparingly, I use mesquite for brisket, but I find mesquite quite harsh, so I am very careful with it.
How timely for me - I’m getting married next month and we are setting up a BBQ bar for people to pick their area sauce for the Boston butt or pulled pork. We have some north Alabama white sauce fans, which I don’t get at all, and my husband to be claims that real vinegar sauce should separate at the table. I am going with a more Dreamland style (BBQ place famous here in Bama) and its peppery vinegar taste. Of course I will provide the abomination that is sweet sauce for those that insist on fucking up a perfectly good piece of meat…
And now we have entered the mayo vs vinegar based slaw negotiations to go with it.
East is straight pork shoulder or whole hog with a thin, vinegary finishing sauce that contains no tomato products. West is the same with a thicker sauce (though still not syruppy think like some KC styles) that contains tomato products (usually ketchup, or what ends up being a homemade version of ketchup.) It’s got a sweetness that balances the tartness of the vinegar, but it’s not overbearingly sweet (at least not in the incarnations I make or have encountered.)
I used to be this way but, man, when you get a brisket that is just cooked perfectly, wow. The first time I smoked brisket I almost wet my pants it was so good. Tasted nothing like the brisket I’ve found in restaurants up until that time (although I have not explored Texas barbecue on its home turf.) That said, there is a reasonable local rendition of brisket at Smoque barbecue. Still, I like it better when I make it at home.
As for Memphis, I do like Memphis barbecue. Had a great time there. The absolute best pulled pork sandwich I had was in a little shack in Eads, Tennessee, Morris Grocery. It’s just a tiny grocery store that happens to have pulled pork sandwiches. Here’s a more in-depth review with pictures at a local food board. Now, if I hadn’t tried it myself, I would have been taken aback by the sweet sauciness and creamy coleslaw of this concoction. But, man oh man, that may have been the absolute best barbecue I’ve ever had anywhere, period. It really made me re-evaluate my ideas about barbecue.
Considering that I now live in a part of the country where “barbecue” refers to what the rest of the world calls “sloppy joe”, I am proud to claim my Texas heritage, which extends to barbecue.
I generally want a nice big hunk of dead cow. I don’t want meat that I can floss my teeth with, I want meat I have to cut with a knife and fork, or ideally, put between two slices of mushy white bread. And sometimes I want sauce, and sometimes I don’t. I don’t want my meat drowning in sauce. Any kind of sauce.
Frankly, I don’t even like most Carolina BBQ. Just give me that nice dead cow, and keep it coming!
South Carolina mustard.
Barbecue is like sex.
Any barbecue is better than no barbecue.