Not to be outdone by the recent introduction of the BBQ Bowl between Campbell College and Gardner-Webb University in NC, The Battle of the Bones rivalry between Memphis and UAB and the spectacular ribs trophy you see below is coming back!
As a result of the latest rounds of conference alignment, the University of Alabama-Birmingham (UAB) will be joining the University of Memphis in the American Athletic Conference (AAC) as a part of a massive expansion with 5 other schools that will expand the conference to 14 teams. Of course, this is just the latest domino to fall after Texas and Oklahoma announced its move to the SEC which led to Cincinnati, Central Florida, and Houston leaving the AAC to join the Big 12.
Regardless of all that, clearly the main takeaway here is that The Battle for the Bones is back, baby! Or kind of…there might be a chance that the original trophy (which reportedly weighs almost a 100 pounds) is lost somehow? That appears to be the rumor according to some tweets I’ve seen on the internet. Surely the internet wouldn’t lead me astray, would it?
Regardless, let’s either find that ribs trophy or create a near-facsimile and get this rivalry back on track. AAC fever, baby!
A lucky reporter is going to get to experience some Peachland Saturdays at Jon G’s
While Pik N Pig rebuilds its restaurant in Carthage damaged by fire, they were at the NC State Fair in Raleigh serving barbecue out of their log cabin booth as they have done since 2006
Potential new NC flag?
Must read thread from Evan LeRoy in the wake of being named #5 in Texas Monthly’s Top 50
Bobby’s BBQ in Fountain Inn, SC celebrated 3 years open last weekend
Denver-based Smōk recently opened its 3rd location (and first outside of Denver) in Fort Collins, CO
Rusty’s Bar-B-Q in Leeds, AL was recently revisited by John Tanner
Pig Beach has opened a Queens location in Astoria
Name: The Pik-N-Pig (NC State Fair stall)
Address: NC State Fair, 1025 Blue Ridge Rd, Raleigh, NC 27607
Order: Pork plate with slaw and beans (link to menu)
Monk: The State Fair is usually home to various deep-fried “delights”, but on a Sunday morning on an unusually warm October day I wasn’t feeling anything of the sort – not even the “deep fried bbq” I spotted at another stall.
On my way into the fair, I saw a truck for Big Al’s BBQ and was planning to find that location but once it came time to actually eat, I spotted a stall for the Pik-n-Pig first. The original location of The Pik-n-Pig is at a small airport in Carthage, NC and coincidentally a good friend had posted some Instagram photos earlier that week from flying in from High Point.
Several bags of wood lump charcoal lined the outside of the stall, which resembled a log cabin. And I could taste the smokiness from it in the pork with large pieces of bark mixed in. Though the coarsely pulled strands were a little bigger than I prefer, the eastern sauce helped with some of the dryness in the larger pieces.
The vinegary white slaw was good and had a distinct flavor that I couldn’t quite place my finger on – and neither could Mrs. Monk. Despite the inability to place the secret ingredient, I liked the slaw quite a bit. The baked beans were pretty standard.
We passed the location for Big Al’s on the way out, which was heavily shaded and had tons of picnic tables. It might have been a better setting but I’m thinking I probably came out ahead in the barbecue department at The Pik-n-Pig. Though I hope to make it to the original location someday – preferably by air, of course.
Atmosphere – 2.5 hogs
Pork – 3.5 hogs
Sides – 3.5 hogs
Overall – 3.5 hogs
– Stephen Colbert is once again poking the NC barbecue bear
“North Carolina, I love you,” Colbert said, “but I’m sorry that barbecue is not as good as South Carolina.”
– Plan accordingly:
– Grant of Marie, Let’s Eat! visits three Memphis-area barbecue joints: Payne’s Bar-B-Q, Jim Neely’s Interstate Bar-B-Q, and Top’s Bar-B-Q
– Charlotte Five weighs in on 5 joints for good barbecue in Lexington, including Lexington Barbecue, The Barbecue Center, Smiley’s, and Speedy’s
– More Charlotte Five content: Mac’s Speed Shop is on this list of 4 meat-focused eateries with great vegetarian options for diner
– UberEats will be delivering Pecan Lodge to Dallas residents today from 11-2 via drones
– The Pik-N-Pig is a NC barbecue joint located at an airport near Carthage