Friday Find: Serious Eats Guide to SC Barbecue

You may recall I wasn’t a huge fan of the NC barbecue video in this series of videos produced by Serious Eats for Arby’s. And this one’s every bit a mess as the other. In addition to the whole “being a blatant ad for Arby’s”, there’s that Creepy Serious Eats founder again. And while they bring in Tyson Ho (he of the newly-opened Arrogant Swine whole hog joint that I’ve been linking to for months) to talk about whole hog barbecue, hey may as well have been talking about eastern NC whole hog barbecue instead of SC. And I actually do suspect he was discussing NC barbecue when he was interviewed seeing as how he is an Ed Mitchell disciple (though he does serve some SC mustard sauce at his joint). He knows his stuff, but keeps referring to “Carolina whole hog” barbecue and even vinegar-based sauce as opposed to the mustard-based sauce they probably want him to discuss in a South Carolina-style video. If I had to guess, I would put money that this was an editing issue and they didn’t or couldn’t get someone to discuss mustard-style barbecue. In any case, way to go again, Serious Eats.


So about this “Serious Eats Guide to Barbecue Styles: North Carolina” video…

So about this “Serious Eats Guide to Barbecue Styles: North Carolina” video…

  • Sponsored by Arby’s Smokehouse Brisket sandwich. This is clearly a tone-setter for how fantastically well this video is going to go.
  • On comes Ed Levine, the founder of Serious Eats, who obviously read about the differences in eastern and western NC barbecue about 2 minutes before he was on camera. CLEARLY he has no idea what he is talking about. Also, has he ever received media training? His crazy hand and eye movements distract from his lack of barbecue knowledge, and that’s saying a lot.
  • Then, they bring on John Stage, whose original Dinosaur Barbecue was originally from the barbecue hotbed of Syracuse, New Freaking York, to talk about NC barbecue. He even says at 0:52 he won’t speak for the rest of North Carolina…UH YEA YOU THINK? Hey Serious Eats/Arby’s, novel idea: how about you get an actual pitmaster from NC to actually talk intelligently about NC barbecue.
  • John then begins to talk about how he loves sauce with barbecue, which is not in any way traditional to NC. Sure, we have our table sauces or dips but nothing like the thick sauce they slather on at 1:10.ARE YOU KIDDING ME WITH THIS?!?!
  • At 1:29, they show several seconds of brisket being sliced. A brisket. Being sliced. VERY RELEVANT TO A DISCUSSION ON NC BARBECUE.
  • Finally, they wrap up this crapshow of a video with yet another ad for Arby’s Smokehouse Brisket sandwich. OH THAT’S JUST A PERFECT WAY TO GO OUT.

If you saw that and were worried that they wouldn’t cover your favorite style of barbecue, well worry no more. They have similarly crappy videos of NYC pitmasters talking about barbecue from South Carolina, Texas, Memphis, Chicago (huh?), and Kansas City. THANKS, SERIOUS EATS.