Linkdown: 5/17/23 – The Day After National BBQ Day Edition

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Monk: Garren’s turning 40 in late June and throwing a heckuva party at Jon G’s! The Jon G’s Jubilee will bring in town Jake Wood of Lawrence Barbecue in Durham as well as the N. Sea Oyster Co from the Topsail Beach area. Charlotte’s Divine Barrel Brewing will provide the beer with ice cream from Wadesboro’s Brown Creek Creamery, who Jon G’s uses for cheeses in their sausages. Tickets will surely go fast for this so if interested, I’d recommend you act quickly.

Ticket info here

Native News

Hubba Hubba Smokehouse has opened for the season; they close each winter and reopen during the spring

Elliot Moss’s Little Louie’s continues to play with smoked meats

Southern Smoke’s Matthew Register is one of the chefs who weigh in on “Boat Chicken”

A belated Happy National Barbecue Day

Non-Native News

Fork Grove BBQ will open this weekend in Anderson

Hector Garate of Palmira BBQ is heading back to Texas for another collab, this time with Khoi Barbecue on May 21

The Memphis in May Barbecue Fest starts this week; here are 10 teams to watch for

How to trim a brisket, by Jess Pryles

Linkdown: 3/8/23 – The “Cooking with Gas” Edition

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Monk: Southern Living readers pick their favorite barbecue in each state in the South for the annual “Best in the South” issue. While Robert Moss provides a foreword, please remember that this is a reader chosen list and not his South’s Top 50 Barbecue Joints list. So address your ire at the masses and not Moss’ inbox.

Moss does note that half of the 14 are repeat, with the other half being new to the list. For North Carolina, the reader’s pick this year was Lexington Barbecue but it was not a repeat winner as last year’s choice was Buxton Hall Barbecue.

Check out the Southern Living reader’s pick at the link below.

Native News

Steve and Gerri Grady get profiled in the local paper, the Mount Olive Tribune

Eat Raleigh checks in at Longleaf Swine and they are also a fan

Congrats to Black Powder Smokehouse on their Asheboro location, their second store

Midwood Smokehouse is doing pork versions of birria tacos

Tickets are now on sale for the Pinehurst Barbecue Festival taking place Labor Day weekend

Non-Native News

Hector Garate of Palmira BBQ is headed to Austin later this month for a collaboration with Interstellar BBQ

Sweatman’s Barbecue in Holly Hill has made the switch to gas

Howard Conyers is hosting The Roots of BBQ Invitational Memorial Day weekend in Paxville, SC (ticket link)

NYC BBQ checks out the relocated Pig Beach in Queens and found that “the quality has not declined a bit even with the big changes the past few months”

Memphis in May will be back at Tom Lee Park for this year’s event

Palmira Barbecue – Charleston, SC

Name: Palmira Barbecue
Date: 4/11/22
Address: 99 S. Market Street, Charleston, SC 29401
Order: Whole hog barbecue, hash and rice, beans, slaw, and collards (link to menu)
Pricing: $$

Monk: As has been well documented, Charleston has experienced a bit of a barbecue renaissance the past few years. Swig N’ Swine and Home Team Barbecue have expanded onto and around the peninsula. Rodney Scott started his self-titled barbecue empire in Charleston in 2017 And now has locations in Birmingham, Homewood, AL, and Atlanta. John Lewis started Lewis Barbecue around the block from Home Team BBQ’s downtown location and Lewis has since opened his border cuisine restaurant Rancho Lewis. Then, in recent years, Palmira Barbecue entered the Charleston barbecue chat.

Hector Garate named Palmira Barbecue after his grandmother and his approach to barbecue reflects both his Cuban and Puerto Rican heritage. He got his start at pop-ups at local breweries, but last fall the Port of Call Food + Brew Hall came…er, calling. Port of Call is what I would consider to be a mini-food hall at the former Bubba Gump Shrimp Company location right off the market. It has a great biergarten-style courtyard with an outdoor bar, 2 more indoor bars, and 5 total food stall options: Italian, Greek street food, Asian Fusion, acai and poke bowls as well as a raw bar. I found it to be a great concept and while business was a little slow on a Monday evening I have been told it gets pretty packed on the weekend.

Palmira offers smoked whole hog every day of the week and on the weekends expands its menu to include some combination of beef cheeks, brisket, beef barbacoa, and house-made sausage. The approach is “farm-to-pit” and for the whole hog, Garate partners with Marvin Ross of Peculiar Pig Farms in nearby Summerville for the heritage hogs that he smokes. The result is flavorful barbecue that is pulled and mixed by hand. Garate spent some time in eastern NC, and perhaps some of that influences his whole hog. Fantastic stuff.

Garate also offers hash and rice most days, a dish that Hector apparently loves and eats daily according to his interview with the Tales from the Pits podcast episode earlier this year. For his hash, he smokes the pig head that goes into the hash and pours the meat gravy over Carolina Gold rice. I might go for a double order next time around.

The Cuban and Puerto Rican influence really came through for me in the sides. The beans have a “Puerto RIcan twist” in the form of I believe sofrito. The Palmira slaw is vinegar-based but nothing like you’d have in either eastern or western North Carolina. The collards pack quite a kick in the form of spice on the back end.

Big things appear to be on the horizon for Hector Garate and Palmira Barbecue. Instead of waiting for a pricey smoker to be built and delivered to him, Hector built his own smoker and will soon be expanding into smoker building for other customers – Cienfuegos Smokers.

Port of Call Food + Brew Hall is a fine start, but I can see Hector expanding to his own brick and mortar for a second location before too long. In short, based on my experience I expect to see more of Palmira Barbecue and its sustainable approach to whole hog and Texas barbecue around Charleston in the near future.

Ratings:
Atmosphere/Ambiance – 3.5 hogs
Pork – 4.5 hogs
Hash – 4.5 hogs
Sides – 3.5 hogs
Overall – 4.5 hogs

Friday Find: Palmira BBQ on Tales from the Pits

Monk: Hector Garate brings his Puerto Rican and Cuban influences to whole hog barbecue and his approach to barbecue at Palmira BBQ (named for his grandmother). I’ll have more on Palmira in the coming weeks (particularly the hash and rice), but in the meantime enjoy this short conversation from Charleston Wine + Food with the Tales from the Pit guys.

Description: Hector Garate has combined the inspiration of his heritage, his upbringing, and modern techniques to create a menu at Palmira BBQ in Charleston that produces high quality items from top to bottom. Serving high quality meats and flavorful, carefully crafted sides, Palmira has burst onto the barbecue scene and quickly become one to watch.

In addition to being open seven days a week, Hector and his partner chef Graham Calabria have also launched Cienfuegos, a pit building business inspired by the direct heat cookers Hector built to cook the heritage breed hogs he serves at Palmira.

Check out Hector’s story and be sure to add a stop at Palmira BBQ to your next Charleston trip.

Palmira BBQ
Instagram: PalmiraBBQ
Located inside Port of Call Food Hall
99 S Market St
Charleston, SC