more about: barbecue

In Praise of Barbecued Chicken

I don’t know for a fact that Rodney Dangerfield liked barbecue chicken, but I’m willing to bet he did. Though chicken is now the most popular meat in America, when it comes to barbecue, the original white meat gets no respect. When people talk about regional barbecue styles, you’ll often hear blanket statements like this: “There are two principal styles […]

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Is Barbecue Getting Super-Sized?

As I’ve been driving around the South sampling barbecue, I regularly alternate between half-century-old joints and brand new, upscale smokehouses. Experienced back-to-back, the contrasts between the older and newer modes of barbecue can be striking. The classic places hew closely to the preferred meats of their region—pork in the Carolinas, beef in Texas—and usually offer just a single flavor of sauce and a handful of sides. The newer spots, which […]

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The Kentucky Report: Shoulder, Monroe County-Style

My barbecue travels recently took me on a swing through Kentucky, including a late afternoon drive through Monroe County in the south-central part of the state, home to one of America’s most distinctive and largely-unheralded barbecue styles. We’re not talking mutton and burgoo—the elements most commonly associated with Kentucky barbecue. Those are found further west. In Monroe County, pork and chicken are […]

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Bringing Whole Hog Barbecue to New Orleans

In recent years, beef brisket has been on the rise in the world of barbecue as new generations of aspiring pitmasters from New York to San Francisco have embraced the Texas method of slow-smoking meat over indirect heat. Brisket’s vogue has troubled some traditionalists, who worry about the future of other regional styles as the new stick-burners eclipse older and more laborious methods like Carolina-style whole hog barbecue. But if […]

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The Pits: A Primer (Part 1)

Barbecue fans make a big deal about the different styles of sauces, rubs, and cuts of meat that are used in various regions of the South, and rightfully so, for the great regional variety is one of the most appealing things about our barbecue traditions. As I’ve been traveling around the South sampling this diversity of styles, one thing that has struck […]

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Can You Barbecue a Steak?

Just before the holidays, the Wall Street Journal’s language columnist Ben Zimmer dug into the derivation of the word “barbecue” and the differences in how the word is used in the North, where a “barbecue” is likely to feature grilled hamburgers or hotdogs, and in the South, where the word universally means large cuts of meat cooked low and slow […]

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The Fourth of July Barbecue: An Old Southern Tradition

Across the South, barbecue will play a starring role in the upcoming July 4th weekend, and newspapers and magazines are chock full of recipes, tips, and tricks to help you prepare. (Here at Southern Living, we even have a few ideas about what to wear.) Celebrating the 4th with barbecue is actually a very old Southern tradition, one that dates back to the beginning […]

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In Praise of Hushpuppies and Barbecue

Last month I put the dynamic duo of hushpuppies and red slaw at the top of my list of the most iconic regional barbecue sides, and I’ve been thinking about hushpuppies ever since. Slaw is eaten alongside barbecue in plenty of places—a Memphis-style pork sandwich, for instance, wouldn’t be complete without it—but hushpuppies are much more localized to North Carolina. Hushpuppies started out […]

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Neighbors Pitch in to Help After Fire at a Top 50 BBQ Joint

Yesterday we got the terrible news that B’s Cracklin’ Barbecue in Savannah, Georgia, which had just made Southern Living’s List of Top 50 BBQ Joints in the South, has been destroyed by fire. (And, no, the barbecue pits aren’t to blame: investigators have said preliminarily that the fire started around a soft drink machine.) But already the Coffee Bluff neighborhood and the […]

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The South’s Top 50 Barbecue Joints: The Backstory

This week, we published my list of the Top 50 Barbecue Joints in the South. But, really, it should be called “a working list” of the Top 50 joints. Let me explain. For the past nine months I’ve been traveling the highways and backroads for Southern Living in search of the best barbecue that each part of the South has to offer. […]

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