America Eats Tavern, Washington, DC

America Eats Tavern is the latest project of superstar chef/humanitarian Jose Andres.  I’m a Jose Andres fan.  I went to his first DC place, an excellent Spanish tapas place called Jaleo, fairly often, in part because I knew two different Department of Justice attorneys who also were flamenco dancers, and who danced there from time to time.  I remember telling Nancy that, “So and so … Continue reading America Eats Tavern, Washington, DC

Picnic, Durham, North Carolina

On our way back from the beach, I dropped Nancy at the Raleigh-Durham airport for a short trip to Massachusetts to see college friends.  I started driving to Picnic to get some barbecue, but Nancy called and announced that her flight had been cancelled.  I returned to the airport and picked her up.  With characteristically quick thinking, Nancy had rebooked to fly out of National … Continue reading Picnic, Durham, North Carolina

The New “Best Shrimp Burger” Champion: Captain’s Kitchen

After our day of comparing the pork at Bum’s Restaurant, the Skylight Inn, and Sam Jones Barbecue, Nancy and I headed for the shore, and a shift in focus away from barbecue toward shrimp burgers. Shrimp burgers are an important part of the coastal experience in North Carolina.  For those who have not had a shrimp burger, it consists of very small shrimp, fried, and … Continue reading The New “Best Shrimp Burger” Champion: Captain’s Kitchen

The Jones Family and Whole Hog BBQ

Thanks to the redoubtable Dan Kenney for sending me this from North Carolina Public Television.  It’s a lovely tribute to three generations of the Jones family, creators of the Skylight Inn and Sam Jones BBQ, two wonderful barbecue places.  The video is about 6 minutes long, and well worth a watch. Praise to North Carolina Public Television and Alabama Public Television (for this) for focusing on what’s … Continue reading The Jones Family and Whole Hog BBQ

Sam Jones BBQ Redux, Winterville, North Carolina

As regular readers know, I recently declared Bum’s restaurant in Ayden, North Carolina, as having the best Eastern North Carolina-style barbecue in the world.  I did not do so lightly; rather, I went to the legendary Skylight Inn, also in Ayden, within minutes to re-check their barbecue to make sure I was right.  As follow-up, Nancy and I checked into the Greenville Residence Inn (Greenville … Continue reading Sam Jones BBQ Redux, Winterville, North Carolina

The Skylight Inn Redux, Ayden, North Carolina

After deciding that Bum’s made the best Eastern North Carolina-style barbecue, I felt duty-bound to double check.  I was, after all, relying on memory in comparing it to other top places.  Out of a sense of fairness, I decided to drive down and double-check it against the fabled Skylight Inn, the place National Geographic declared has the best barbecue in the country (and thus, the … Continue reading The Skylight Inn Redux, Ayden, North Carolina

The Best Barbecue in North Carolina (Eastern Division): Bum’s Restaurant, Ayden, North Carolina

I wrote about Bum’s a while back, based on comments by my nephew, Jimbo Tanner, who was there with son, Jack “The New Much-Improved John Tanner” Tanner.  You can read that post for some background on the place.  They both liked it a lot, and both subsequently have volunteered that it’s now their favorite barbecue place.  Given the wealth of great barbecue places in Eastern … Continue reading The Best Barbecue in North Carolina (Eastern Division): Bum’s Restaurant, Ayden, North Carolina

Mr. Phil Schenk, Rest in Peace

Mr. Phil Schenk, the former pit master at the legendary Red Bridges Barbecue Lodge, passed on August 5, 2018.  He was 74. If you haven’t been there, you may remember Red Bridges as the winner of the Garden and Gun 32-“team” barbecue bracket (back during the NCAA basketball tournament season) in 2015.  They defeated SAW’s in the final, and the Skylight Inn and Lexington #1, among others, … Continue reading Mr. Phil Schenk, Rest in Peace

Guest Post: Darryl Morin on Smokin’ Dave’s BBQ and Brew, Estes Park, Colorado

I’m tickled to have a guest post from Darryl Morin, one of the finest people I know.  He’s smart, unfailingly pleasant, and without a mean or selfish bone in his body.  I met him at a LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens) convention in Chicago (I think) about 10 or 12 years ago, and we’ve kept in touch since.  Darryl grew up in hardscrabble … Continue reading Guest Post: Darryl Morin on Smokin’ Dave’s BBQ and Brew, Estes Park, Colorado

The Fishing Pig, Farmville, Virginia

Well, they say it’s in Farmville, but it’s actually in Kingsville, a few miles down the road near Hampden-Sydney.  We took the back road down to North Carolina to avoid I95, and hit Farmville at lunchtime.  Yelp’s top restaurant for Farmville turned out to be the Fishing Pig (motto — Eat like a Pig, Drink like a Fish).  Who could resist a name like that? … Continue reading The Fishing Pig, Farmville, Virginia