Vaughn, a smart and funny writer (is that sucking up hard enough, editor Dan?) tweets as @bbqsnob. And while he certainly knows his Texas 'cue, some of the other barbecue worlds had escaped him. So as any good researcher would, he hit the road last week to smoke over how we do it here in the real land of barbecue. Many of us were following along via Twitter.
Of all the gifts the gods might give us, to see ourselves as others see us. So I gathered his tweets in one list. Dropping a few to keep it focused and adding a little translation here and there (@redblank is photographer Nicholas McWhirter), here's a look at how Vaughn saw us:
Tuesday, April 10:
boarding a plane soon and I'm coming for all your Cheerwine & Fullsteam
beer. What else should I be drinking in NC? North Carolina
2. @redblank and I @dfwairport waiting to go whole hog all over #ncbbq. (That's gotta be the most obvious BBQ pun.)
3. Salt Lick at
The brisket was actually better than my meager expectations. Great beans. DFW Airport
4. Chopped beef, sauce and bun. Salt Lick at the airport. Will this be better than #ncbbq? I hope not.
Wednesday, April 10:
1. Hog skin at B's in
. This is how to start a #ncbbq tour. Greenville, NC
2. Feasting at B's BBQ. Chicken incredible and the pork was great too. Very little smoke but freshly . . . .
3. I kid you not, after a meal at B's BBQ w/@redblank, I approached the owner outside. Just as I said we're from TX a bird shit on me.
4. Small tray at Skylight Inn in Ayden. Adding the cracklings into the chopped meat is brilliant.
5. The capital spire & the pork tray at Skylight Inn.
6. No AC at Wilber's in
but the service is very friendly. Before entrees we learned of our server's
recent surgery up in Goldsboro . Greenville
7. Hash tags so far in Eastern #ncbbq - #humility #oak #collards #proudtradition #family #hospitable #cashonly
8. A snack at Wilber's. I love this slaw w/a hint of horseradish? and the pork's good too.
9. After just a single day of #ncbbq, I must say NC Brunswick Stew < GA Brunswick stew by a mile or six.
10. @joeperryintx At what sort of establishments would one happen to find this 'livermush' you speak of?
Barbecue, NC was named by
a man from the West Indies who saw fog ocming
off the narrow creek and thought it looked like a BBQ pit.
12. Pleasure meeting Pastor Williams at the Barbecue Presbyterian Church in Barbecue, NC.
13. Pork platter at
ain't bad but pales in comparison to that fried chicken. Smithfield
14. The pork sandwich at Smithfield Chicken & BBQ illuminated by the Chrysler 200 dome light.
15. Ingested way too much pork today, but back in
and @johntedge said I should make room for dessert @poolesdinner. How late
y'all open? Raleigh
16. My digestive track is yelling back at you right now.
17. @johntedge @poolesdiner. Redemption rye and bruleed bananas headed my way. Maybe a nightcap at Fox Liquor.
18. Excellent banana tart at @poolesdiner to cap off the night.
19. Piggly Wiggly empanadas from Calavera in
featuring NC smoked pork. You'll want to eat these. Raleigh
Thursday, April 11:
1. Day 2 of the #ncbbq quest. Headed west today.
2: First stop in the
Piedmont. Short Sugar's in Reidsville.
3. Minced on the sandwich, chopped on the tray at Short Sugar's.
4. First red slaw of #ncbbq trip. Stamey's in
Tastes like cocktail sauce mixed w/cabbage, in a good way. Greensboro
5. Sliced plate, chopped sandwich, Brunswick stew at Stamey's.
6. Those are hushpuppies and they are superb.
7. Thanks to @grillgirl we made sure to get a chili dog w/slaw at Stamey's. Outstanding.
8. The pit house at Stamey's in
Expansive and cleaner than most pit rooms I've seen. Greensboro
9. In the car and ready to leave Stamey's then see @dennyculbert's photo of the outside brown pork & peach cobbler. Back inside.
10. Peach cobbler at Stamey's in
11. The outside brown at Stamey's, aka what was missing on that earlier smokeless sliced pork plate.
12. Outside brown: #ncbbq = fatty brisket: #txbbq. . . . If you don't ask for it, you probably won't get it. But it's the best thing off the pit.
13. @johntedge The first bite of outside brown at Stamey's was a revelation. It turned a ho-hum day of BBQ into one full of possibilities.
14. A little more outside brown from
Bar-B-Q Center in .
Great stuff. Lexington
15. More wonderful outside brown at Lexington Barbecue #1.
16. Maybe the best cracklings and sauce of the trip at Lexington Barbecue #1. This place is great.
17. I'm sure you've seen it before, but here are the iconic pit room stacks at Lexington Barbecue #1.
18. Burning hickory in the fire pit at Lexington Barbecue.
19. Look what we found at Cook's BBQ south of
Brisket & ribs combo. Couldn't resist. Lexington
20. Asked for outside brown. Got the inside, frown. At Cook's BBQ south of
21. Allen & Sons in
Chapel Hill toes line between E &
W NC. Pork shoulders, but w/ vinegar sauce untainted by ketchup.
22. Finally found great NC Brunswick stew at Allen & Sons. Really, the whole meal was great.
23. Enjoying a Highland Gaelic Ale at (Crook's Corner in
Come by and say hi.
24. Too full, but maybe a late night empanada.
25. Meeting & talking w/ John Shelton Reed in NC was a pleasure. Drinking sazeracs in his living room while discussing his new book on NOLA? Wow.
26. Once again, we had pie for a nightcap. @chulegre (Bill Smith of Cook's Corner) makes a mean key lime pie w/ a saltine crust.
27. After a day in the east for #ncbbq it's all about whole hog, clear vinegar sauce, mayo slaw, collards, oak and cash only.
28. After a day in the west for #ncbbq it's all about pork shoulder, red vinegar sauce, red slaw, fries, hickory and credit cards accepted.
29. After hearing all the jawing about West v. East in #ncbbq - The state is united under a banner of pork, vinegar, cabbage and hush puppies.
Friday, April 12:
1. This morning means goodbye to #ncbbq and hello to #scbbq with first stop in
three hours away. Tired. Hemingway, SC
! I was
not expecting to be welcomed by a giant sombrero hoisted on a tower. South Carolina
3. It's all about the hog and pepper sauce at Scott's BBQ in Hemingway, SC. Incredible stuff.
4. The only way to cool the burn of Scott's sauce is to just keep eating, or take a swig of Red Rock soda.
5. I've been getting requests for recommendations on NC BBQ joints. I spent 2 days there. @bbqjew has spent his life there. Follow him.
6. Generous tray of food for $12 at Brown's BBQ in Kingstree. Good eatin'.
7. The first gasser pit we've encountered this far on the tour. Brown's pit in Kingstree.
8. Scott's in Hemingway -- all wood cooking, slaw and beans only. Brown's uses gas & has 15 sides, like this catfish stew.
9. I wasn't expecting the BBQ sandwich at Cooper's in Salters to come wrapped in plastic & be warmed in the microwave.
10. A well-cooked hog sopped in a great sauce can still taste good, but you can taste the difference at Scott's.
11. Cooper's Country Store in Salters, SC. Come for the historic building, then go to Scott's for BBQ.
12. McCabe's BBQ in Manning has a spicy vinegar based sauce similar to Scott's w/some of the smokiest meat in
13. Sweatman's BBQ. Our only mustard stop of the #scbbq tour.
14. Ended the #scbbq tour on a very high note by sharing a seafood tower @eattheordinary (Mike Lata’s new
restaurant, The Ordinary). Charleston