A field guide to Barbecue in the American South

by Rachel Baker on March 25, 2014

Its about that time…roadtripping through different states, looking for the coolest things to do, see and eat. For some, its finding the neatest things while antiquing through the colonial east; for others, its seeing things like that great big-ass ball of string or the big-ass sombrero on I95 at South of the Border; and still for others, its learning to eat rattlesnake, gator, or just questing for the best Barbecue in the country.

How to spot a great barbecue joint

Just follow three simple rules:
1. The uglier the exterior, the better the ‘cue. Some of our favorite barbecue joints inhabit former gas stations, old barns and back alley basements. Many don’t even have indoor seating – plan to crowd in at the communal picnic benches with everyone else in town.

2. Look for a trail of wood smoke curling around from the back of the restaurant. The good places will smoke their meat with real wood, not gas. Bonus points if the owner splits the wood him or herself.

3. See a cop car or off-duty ambulance in the parking lot? Is the DA talking local politics with the ex-mayor in the back booth? Then it’s probably a good place. Public servants always know the best spots. Clichéd, but true.

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