Monk: This Thanksgiving, consider leaving the cooking to the professionals at these Charlotte-area barbecue joints. You also get the added benefit of supporting a local business while you take it easy because let’s face it, we should all take it easy when we can. See below for information.
Big Tiny’s BBQ – Mooresville, NC
The Dixie Pig – Rock Hill, SC
Farmhouse BBQ – Gastonia, NC
The Improper Pig – Charlotte, Fort Mill
Jon G’s Barbecue – Peachland, NC
Mac’s Speed Shop
OooWee BBQ – Pineville
The Q Shack
RayNathan’s – Gastonia, NC
Rock Store BBQ – Stallings
The Smoke Pit – Concord, Gastonia, Monroe, Salisbury
Name: The Dixie Pig Location: 2007 Celanese Rd, Rock Hill, SC 29732 Date: 7/20/15 Order: Pork platter with hash and red slaw, half rack of ribs Price: Monk: $27
We’ve long ago established that we don’t trust Yelp reviews when it comes to to barbecue. However, when I come across a new joint I do admit that I sometimes use the site as a reference. After my experience at The Dixie Pig in Rock Hill, SC (4.7 stars on the site), I think I have written off Yelp even more so in terms of barbecue credibility.
On a Monday shortly after 12 noon, I walked into a small restaurant with a full lunch crowd. If the locals are packing a place in, well that’s usually a good sign. I took a spot at the bar and before long all tables and spots at the bar were filled. It turned out to be downhill from there, but I will say that the service at the bar was good at least.
I asked for the pork with the sauce on the side in the event that it came out drenched in the stuff as other plates seemed to be. The meat appeared to have been held under a heat lamp for a while prior to serving. Plus there was no bark or smoke. I peeked into the kitchen from the bar and saw a Southern Pride gas smoker in the back. You can usually coax some smoke out of a Southern Pride with some wood chunks during the process, but it was as if they hadn’t even tried that. I simply couldn’t finish my serving.
I added a half rack of ribs to my order since there was no combo platters available. The meat fell off the bone when I picked up a rib which could be indicative of boiling of ribs before cooking them. Either way, they were way overcooked and were just about on par with the pork, which is to say not so good.
Sides were a mixed bag. The red slaw lacked tang and had a weird sweetness to them (likely due to excess ketchup but that alone may not have accounted for the taste). I’m no hash and rice expert, but at least this version seemed to be ok. That and the two hush puppies that came with the platter were by far the best part of the meal.
I can only imagine why this place was so packed and had a line of folks waiting to be seated by the time I left. Smokeless, dry pork and ribs with the consistency of boiled ribs: that’s what you are in for if you stop into The Dixie Pig in Rock Hill. What a disappointing meal.