Linkdown: 9/15/21

As of Monday, Robert Moss has officially launched his new digital publication Southeastern Dispatch, a “fresh look at food & drink in the Carolinas.” He has enlisted food journalists from both North and South Carolina, and so far posts have covered the Triangle and Charleston, with surely more cities and regions to be covered soon. I briefly spoke with him about this at Jon G’s Barbecue last month and have been intrigued ever since. I am curious what this mean’s for his weekly Cue Sheet barbecue newsletter, which took a brief hiatus but returned this week post launch.

Read more at SoutheasternDispatch.com.

Native News

Jon G’s Barbecue, Lawrence Barbecue, and Prime Barbecue all make this list from Southern Living

For his new Southeastern Dispatch, Moss also examines what happened to Raleigh’s barbecue boom?

Indian Trail’s 100 Main Beef and Barbecue is now both a barbecue restaurant and a country store

Barvecue, the wood-smoked plan-based barbecue company out of Cornelius, is rolling out to 12 colleges and universities and just signed a deal with Sprouts Farmers Market

A&G’s Barbecue & Chicken in Carolina Beach to close this week after 33 years in business as owner Angela Stainaker retires; the restaurant will be taken over by Tammy and John Sharpe, who will reopen the location as Butts ‘n’ Such

Non-Native News

The Washington Post is also featuring vegan barbecue

The Smoke Sheet interviewed Daniel Vaughn in last week’s issue

Now that’s a #woodpilewednesday

Friday Find: “Kansas City’s Best New BBQ Joint Is In A Haunted House: Chef J BBQ”

Monk: In their first produced video (with the help of Tarik Sykes), The Smoke Sheet profiles Pitmaster Justin Easterwood of Chef J BBQ who sells his barbecue until it sells out in downtown Kansas City.

Description:

Pitmaster Justin Easterwood opened Chef J BBQ in downtown Kansas City’s historic West Bottoms neighborhood early in 2020. The restaurant is located inside The Beast haunted house and serves the highest quality cut-to-order smoked meats and fresh house made side dishes.

Chef J BBQ
1401 W. 13th Suite G Street,
Kansas City, Mo 64102
Ph: (816)805-8283

Linkdown: 4/29/20

More good from the Southern Smoke Foundation

Prime Barbecue was set to open a few weekends ago but that has been put on hold for the time being, as has any other businesss openings in Wake County

Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ to open a second Birmingham-area location in the town of Homewood

University of Texas football legend Cedric Griffin now has a barbecue truck in Austin

This week’s Somewhere South looks to be a must-watch for barbecue lovers

James Beard-award winning author Adrian Miller joined Vivian Hoard to tape the episode of “Somewhere South”

Thanks to The Smoke Sheet for featuring our recent post on mail order barbecue options in NC and SC in their latest issue

More coverage on the re-opening of Wilber’s Barbecue from the local paper

RIP Carter Brothers Barbecue in our hometown of High Point; it had been open since 1997 but will not reopen due to the coronavirus

D.G. Martin wonders what other great NC barbecue restaurants won’t survive either

John Brown Smokehouse – Long Island City, NY

Name: John Brown Smokehouse
Address: 10-43 44th Dr, Long Island City, NY 11101
Order: 1/2 lb of burnt ends, 1/2 lb pork belly, and 1/2 lb pulled pork with corn bread and collards (link to menu)
Pricing: $$

A quick work trip to New York City allowed me to accomplish a couple of barbecue-related things while in town (after finishing up my day job requirements, of course): try another New York barbecue joint to see how its barbecue scene continues to develop and also meet up with Sean Ludwig of NYC BBQ and The Smoke Sheet.

Regarding the latter, I had met up with Ryan Cooper (aka BBQ Tourist), the other half of The Smoke Sheet, last year in Charlotte so meeting Sean would complete my Smoke Sheet punch card. Turns out, Sean is also a great guy and I enjoyed “talking shop” regarding all things barbecue and how they run The Smoke Sheet. Sean is a thoughtful guy and gave me a lot of great things to think about when it comes to Barbecue Bros.

In terms of barbecue, I knew I would be limited when it comes to barbecue options after 8pm on a Monday night. Consulting with Sean ahead of time, we settled on John Brown Smokehouse in Long Island City since it’s open until 10 and was convenient to both my midtown hotel and Sean’s apartment. John Brown’s is a Kansas City-style barbecue joint that opened in 2012 and its co-owner and pitmaster Josh Bowen has also opened the Texas-themed Mothership Meat Company a few miles away, but that appears to be more of a warm weather patio spot.

Thankfully, John Brown Smokehouse was able to mostly deliver when it came to barbecue though some meats were understandably out by the time we get there (which is of course always preferable to serving old or not-up-to-par meats). Sean took the lead in terms of the order and we settled on a 1/2 lb each of burnt ends, pork belly, and pulled pork.

I’ll get the pulled pork out of the way since it was my least favorite of the three meats. John Brown Smokehouse served a coarsely chopped pulled pork that had good bark that surprisingly lacked much flavor.

The brisket is apparently not the order at John Brown and instead Sean recommended that we should go for the burnt ends. According to Sean, the brisket is sliced too thin while the burnt ends are taken from the fatty point of the brisket so you should just order them instead. Curiously, the burnt ends were not sauced as you might expect from a Kansas City joint but regardless, they were moist and flavorful.

I’m not sure if pork belly is typical at Kansas City barbecue restaurants or if this was a case of just wanting to have a variety of meats on John Brown’s menu, but it was yet another case of a successful protein available past 9. Similar to the other meats, it came sauceless but the well-rendered fattiness of the pork belly didn’t require any sauce.

Speaking of sauces, be sure to taste test your sauce bottles if you do go for sauce, as the highly spicy variant of the barbecue was mistakenly labeled and could have led to unexpected results had I been overly aggressive with the sauce.

In terms of sides, the cornbread is a must order at John Brown Smokehouse. Though its not a traditional cornbread cake, instead having a texture of a corn pudding. Moist and sweet, their version of cornbread was a different twist on cornmeal I hadn’t seen before that more than made up for their lackluster collards.

John Brown Smokehouse would have been forgiven for mediocre meats at a less-than-optimal time of day. Thankfully, they more than delivered a great meal on a rainy, nasty Monday night and I can imagine earlier in the day it would have been even better.

Ratings:
Atmosphere – 3.5 hogs
Pork – 3 hogs
Burnt Ends – 3.5 hogs
Pork Belly – 3.5 hogs
Sides – 4 hogs
Overall – 3.5 hogs