Southern Living Magazine, their barbecue editor Robert Moss, Home Team BBQ, and Swig & Swine recently announced the Holy Smokes barbecue festival in Charleston this November. The pitmasters are still to be announced, but expect folks from South Carolina, California, Georgia, New York, North Carolina and Texas are expected to be in attendance. Here’s hoping it becomes a fixture for years to come.
Congrats to Lyttle Bridges Cabiness of Red Bridges Barbecue Lodge in Shelby for her induction into the Barbecue Hall of Fame
Not that we’re anywhere close to being qualified enough to evaluate books but more so as a public service announcement we will periodically discuss barbecue and barbecue-related books.
Monk: Two of the most highly anticipated barbecue books of the year came out within a few weeks of each other, with “Rodney Scott’s World of BBQ” by Rodney Scott and Lolis Eric Elie coming out first on March 16 followed by Adrian Miller’s “Black Smoke: African Americans and the United States of Barbecue” on April 27.
The first half of Rodney’s book is all memoir, recounting his origins in tiny Hemingway, SC working at Scott’s Bar-B-Que the family barbecue restaurant and convenience store. The story of how he got from there to co-owning Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ in Charleston, Birmingham, and Atlanta (with two more Alabama locations planned just this year) is fairly well worn territory if you’ve heard an interview or watched Netflix’s “Chef’s Table: BBQ.” What’s not as familiar or well-known is Scott’s current family dynamic, particularly with his father Roosevelt “Rosie” Scott.
In sometimes painful detail, Scott and Elie describe how the breakdown of their relationship started with some mistrust as a result of Scott’s budding barbecue celebrity. Even though all of his work and travel was on behalf of the family business, false accusations and rumors began to circulate in their small town. And that ultimately led to a severing of his relationship with his father and Scott departing for Charleston and starting his budding barbecue restaurant empire. His current relationship with both his father and mother is nonexistent as of the writing of this book and the press tours he’s done this spring.
The book is written in Scott’s voice, which can surely be attributed to Elie’s help. Scott’s mantra is “Every Day is a Good Day” and that blue skies philosophy is clear when reading his writing. A cookbook written by Scott himself was surely a draw, but adding in an accomplished writer such as Elie only added to the appeal. Lolis wrote a seminal text in “Smokestack Lightning: Adventures in the Heart of Barbecue Country” back in 2005, a book that has been on my radar for quite some time.
The second half of the book is all recipes, starting with how to set up and smoke a whole hog on a cinder block pit in great detail (similar to what Sam Jones and Elliot Moss described in their respective books). From there, it’s all Scott’s menu and point of view, informed by his Pee Dee South Carolina origins.
While Adrian Miller’s “Black Smoke” traced the history and contributions of African Americans to barbecue’s history, Scott’s book actually makes some history of its own, being the first barbecue book by a black pitmaster/chef ever (think about that). “Rodney Scott’s World of BBQ” is a must read barbecue book that gives you just as much insight into the man behind the barbecue empire as well as his food.
Monk: Tommy Tomlinson welcomes Adrian Miller onto his SouthBound podcast during his recently publicity tour for his “Black Smoke” book. A lot of similar ground is covered if you’ve listened to other interviews or podcasts with Miller, but Tomlinson manages to cover some new topics with his thoughtful questions.
Don’t have Spotify? Click here for other ways to listen to the episode.
Description: SouthBound host Tommy Tomlinson interviews Adrian Miller, James Beard Award-winning food writer and author of the new book “Black Smoke,” about Black barbecue pioneers.
This latest piece of controversial barbecue list content from one “chefspencil.com” has been rightly getting roasted online since the weekend, but perhaps that was the intent all along? I mean, who had even heard of “chefspencil.com,” an Austrialian website, before this list?
The list allegedly uses data from TripAdvisor and phew buddy TripAdvisor is not happy about any connection to th list and its backlash.
New Orlean’s at number 1? Red flag. No Texas cities on the list? Red flag. As for Charlotte’s rank of 3 on the list? I say this as a Charlotte resident, but red flag. I’m not the only Charlottean who feels this way. Enter Kathleen Purvis:
Let’s declare a moratorium on any further discussion or outrage on anything “chefspencil.com” related, particularly when it comes to barbecue.
Fighting words from the Hear to Say podcast host Tressie McMillan Cottom
An oldie but a goodie from Our State Magazine for National Barbecue Day this past Sunday
Myron Mixon’s Jack’s Old South team wins Whole Hog and the whole shebang at last weekend’s Memphis in May Barbecue Championship
Three barbecue and brewery pairings in Texas
More coverage of Rodney Scott and Adrian Miller’s books, with quotes from Daniel Vaughn
Black Smoke vs Savory Spice Shop
High on the Hog premieres on Netflix in one week on 5/26