Name: Kepley’s Pit-Cooked Barbecue
Address: 1304 N Main St., High Point, NC
Order: Chopped plate with fries, slaw, hush puppies (link to menu)
Speedy: I was recently in the home place of High Point during a work day, just working from my parent’s house. This seemed like as good a time as any to go back to my roots and grab some ‘cue from Kepley’s for lunch. It has been a long time since I had eaten at Kepley’s, as I generally make the drive to Lexington in lieu of eating High Point ‘cue, but after this meal, I think I’ll opt for Kepley’s more often.
Monk: You know, it’s sad to say that I’ve only eaten at Kepley’s once, and it was just 4 years ago. Sounds like I’ve been missing out on quality barbecue all these years.
Rudy: I’m the same, it was a couple of miles away from my house and I rarely went, however I always enjoyed it when I did go.
Speedy: The restaurant itself isn’t much more than a trailer – I’d be surprised if it could fit more than 30 people. But it is quaint and is exactly what you think of when you think of a traditional ‘cue joint. They do have a separate small smokehouse for smoking the pork shoulders and there was a large wood pile sitting outside the smokehouse – always a great sign.
Monk: So I’ve been missing out on wood smoked barbecue in my backyard all these years! And not 2 miles from our high school. Man, I feel like an idiot.
Speedy: One thing I love about these restaurants is the order process. As the menu at most Lexington style joints is pretty consistent, all I have to say is “chopped tray with hush puppies and a Cheerwine” and I’m good to go. The food is then served quickly and you’re ready to eat.
The pork at Kepley’s is really, really good. There’s just the right amount of smoke and bark. It’s clear these guys know what they’re doing. My serving was just a tad dry, but adding some extra dip provided on the table cleared that up immediately.
The sides are also very good. The slaw could use a little more tang (I add more dip here too, as well as some Texas Pete) and the fries are just your standard crinkle fries, but both are good. I’m not a huge fan of the pickle slices that come on top of the slaw, but they don’t really affect the flavor of the slaw once removed, so no harm done. The hush puppies at Kepley’s are perfect – definitely among the best you’ll find anywhere.
Monk: Well that’s settled. I’m definitely heading to Kepley’s next time I make it home.
Speedy: All in all, Kepley’s is a very good barbecue restaurant. If you moved it to the middle of Lexington, it would stack up well with the other joints in town. If you find yourself in downtown High Point, I’d say Kepley’s Barbecue is definitely the place to go to check out some ‘cue.