Chez Hammons 2019, Washington, DC

Regular readers will recall the annual Hammons-Guy cookout as one of the heights of the Washington, DC, social season, and, along with the Annual Beer Snob Pig Picking in Lumberton, North Carolina, and The Great Independence Day Barbecue here at Stately Tanner Manor, one of the red letter barbecue events of the year.  This year, they kicked it up yet another notch.

As with any great tradition, the core remains the same:  pork —

hammopmns pork

Hold on.  Let’s look at that  fora while.  Oh, and ribs.

hammons ribs

Oh my.  Cooking all that pork meant staying up all hours, but they worked diligently and the neighbors only called the police once.  I looked into it, and it seems that an NBA employee overheard someone say “Free Hong Kong” and dutifully called the police.

And of course, Scott cooked his famous Firehouse Chicken in his Top Secret white sauce.

hammons ch

Julie prepared  an array of sides (baked beans not pictured), all of which offered a thoughtful counterpoint to the meats.  Each was light and refreshing.

She probably did most of the other unheralded work.  The orzo salad was especially good.  Did Julie add the lemon slices this year?  I know the beet salad was new, and I really hope it reappears next year.

The meats, of course, were the stars of the show, and each was excellent, as always; indeed, even better this year.  The ribs deserve special mention:  AJ achieved the perfect texture this year, tender but with a good chew.  And Scott must have done something to the white sauce for the chicken.  It tasted even better this year, and each of the several pieces I tried was perfectly cooked.  It’s remarkable, considering how bland most chicken usually tastes, just how good a well-seasoned, well-cooked chicken can taste.

They also kicked up the choice of sauces for the pork, including a good vinegar sauce this year, and something with some real heat.  (By this time I was getting weaker and weaker omg details, not tp mention being unwilling to bend my knees to get a proper photo.)

hammons sauces

The event also was made more kid-friendly (thus the mustard, etc., above, for hot dogs) with some special toys for kids to supplement Hudson’s impressive fleet of trucks and construction vehicles.

Ella had a lot of fun playing with Hudson and the other children and dropping the bags into the cornhole slot.

It’s quite an operation,

hammopns grills

and attracts a crowd from mid-afternoon until late in the late evening, when the cigars and whiskey come out.  Well, the whiskey comes out earlier.  By that time, the old folks (moi) have fallen fast behind those with younger legs.   We all eagerly look forward to the Hammons-Guy annual do.  Great food and great people make it a highlight of the year.   You know, you could probably sneak in next year, but don’t tell anyone I suggested it.


And while you’re at it, click “follow” on our front page to receive blog posts in your email box.  Or bookmark us and check in from time to time.  If you’re planning a trip, you can “Search” the name of the city, state, or country for good restaurants (in Europe, usually close to sites, like the Louvre or the Van Gogh Museum, that you’ll want to visit in any event).  Comments, questions, and suggestions of places to eat or stories to cover are very welcome.  And check out our Instagram page, johntannerbbq.

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