Linkdown: 2/3/21

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Shortly after my first visit to Mr. Barbecue in Winston-Salem in March of 2019 (which I greatly enjoyed), a spark caught fire in the pit house and nearly burned the entire restaurant down. Last I had heard, it was on track for a May 2020 opening and brick was being laid in the smokehouse but clearly that didn’t happen as scheduled (which can be excused during a pandemic, of course). Thankfully, the silence was not a bad omen as WXII is reporting that Mr. Barbecue will reopen later this month.

This will be one in the win column for classic, wood-fired NC barbecue joints, a sometimes rare occurrence these days. Of course, Wilber’s Barbecue in Goldsboro came back from the dead last year under new ownership and there are a host of new or announced restaurants that are smoking barbecue the old fashioned way (most of which seem to be in the greater Raleigh area). But more often than not, these older joints are closing (see Allen & Son, Bill Spoon’s, Bill Ellis Barbecue, The Original Q Shack, among others). But not today, Satan. Not today.

Now, just cross your fingers and toes until late February…

Native News

Sam Jones BBQ has finally opened in Raleigh and is currently in a “soft open” mode

Lawrence Barbecue is hosting a Mardi Gras Party on February 16

More on Lagoon, the sister “leisure bar” to Lawrence Barbecue

Bill Ellis Barbecue, which closed 2 years ago, is going on the auction block as part of a parcel of land in Wilson

Another delay for The Preserve; the pop-up from Ed and Ryan Mitchell has been pushed back to March 5 from late January

Big Mike’s BBQ is opening a location in downtown Cary after expanding to Apex last year

Make your own Cheerwine barbecue sauce with Cheerwine syrup

Non-Native News

Smokejack in Alpharetta, GA is a “must-visit” according to The BBQ Review

Moe Cason has announced his plans for a barbecue restaurant in Des Moines, IA, and pulls no punches when it comes to other restaurants in the area

How Franklin Barbecue has adapted to barbecue during a pandemic

Linkdown: 12/15/20

Featured

In his latest issue of The Cue Sheet, Robert Moss examines the ten best college cities or towns to attend according to nearby barbecue options. While my alma mater NC State is mentioned as a future possibility once the planned restaurants like Sam Jones BBQ, Wyatt’s Barbecue, and Longleaf Swine open their doors in 2021 (not to mention Prime BBQ in Knightdale that opened this year and the upcoming Ed Mitchell’s The Preserve), several NC towns make the list. Not on the list either is Chapel Hill, primarily due to the loss of Allen & Son last year.

East Carolina University in Greenville has B’s Barbecue, Sam Jones Barbecue and the two Ayden joints nearby (Skylight and Bum’s) and comes in at #9. Surprisingly, Catawba College in Salisbury, NC makes the list just ahead of Greenville due to a couple of joints in town (College Barbecue and Richard’s) plus its proximity to Lexington and its myriad options for barbecue.

That’s it for NC on this list but both Columbia and Charleston appear further down from our neighbors to the south. I won’t spoil the rest of the list, but if you think hard enough you can probably guess which university and city takes the #1 spot on the list.

Native News

The Great NC BBQ Map poster is 50% off through today

The Pinehurst Barbecue Festival is planned for September 3-5, 2021

The Bar-B-Q King is one of many COVID-friendly food options in Charlotte for walk-up or drive-thru (or in this case, drive-in)

In NC, barbecue sauce makes a great gift writes Spectrum News

OooWee BBQ has smoked meat by the pound available in take-and-bake meals

Primal BBQ is set to open in Wilmington later this month and will serve a little bit of everything

Longleaf Swine is one barbecue restaurant offering to-go meals in Raleigh

Wish I could attend this socially-distanced pig pickin’ in Durham this weekend

Chicken bog long sleeve tees from Buxton Hall released just in time for last minute Christmas shopping

Non-Native News

In perhaps the least surprising news of the week, Tim Carman found better options than the McRib in DC

Even though Pat Mahomes went to college in Texas, he prefers Kansas City barbecue

This smothered tater tots collaboration between Fox Bros Bar-B-Q and Nina and Rafi looks amazing

An American pitmaster living in Hong Kong names the US barbecue restaurants he dreams of going back to some day, including Rodney Scott’s BBQ, Cozy Corner, Franklin Barbecue, and Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ

Pork n’ Pine Santa delivers pulled pork sammies in Baltimore

Friday Find: “I Ordered a Brisket in the Mail from Franklin Barbecue and it Was…”

Monk: Jeremy from Mad Scientist BBQ first visited Franklin Barbecue in December 2018. With the world being what it is now and the prospects aren’t looking great for a return visit, he mail orders a full brisket from Franklin Barbecue via Goldbelly and in this video walks through how to reheat before comparing it to the his first experience at the actual restaurant two years ago. How did it turn out?

More about Mad Scientist BBQ:
I’m a barbecue enthusiast from Kentucky who loves to spend time smoking meat and enjoying the rewards of a long cook. I’m also a former Biology and Chemistry teacher, so I have a love for science. On my channel I’ll take you through all of the steps of making great BBQ while dispelling some of the common myths that are so pervasive in BBQ cooking. We’ll cover some of the science behind different techniques and approaches as well as why some methods really aren’t worth your time. Though I’m no competition cook, I’ve spent many hundreds of hours watching the fires and nurturing the meat in my smoker. It’s my hope that I can pass on what I’ve learned and help my viewers avoid some of the (many) mistakes I’ve made along the way.

So stay tuned for helpful, informative, and fun BBQ content!

–Jeremy Yoder

Friday Find: Franklin Barbecue on ReOpen

Monk: Aaron Franklin and Kevin Pearce from Franklin Barbecue open up about how they have navigated the safety protocols, the pivot to curbside takeout, and the tricky finances during the pandemic. Franklin is sporting a pretty sweet pandemic hairdo, by the way.

Description:

ReOpen is a short-format docuseries that gives viewers a window into the difficult decisions that restaurant chefs and owners are making every day to try and provide hospitality, keep diners safe, and save their businesses during a global pandemic.

Each episode focuses on a different restaurant or culinary business — how they’ve survived during the shutdown, their thoughts on the government’s response to the pandemic, and where they go from here.

In this episode, we talk to Aaron Franklin and Kevin Pearce from Franklin Barbecue.