La Barbecue

New Head Pitmaster at La Barbecue

It’s not breaking news that la Barbecue pitmaster John Lewis is working to open a new barbecue joint in Charleston, South Carolina. He announced his intentions late last year, and Lewis Barbecue will open later this year. That means John Lewis will be spending a lot of time in Charleston. He has an apartment there, and flies back and forth on a regular basis. “Once we open [in Charleston] I’ll pretty much be there full-time” he…

James Beard

A Barbecue Man in a Quiche Town

Barbecue’s reputation in the culinary world has turned a corner. Last week the nominations for the New York based James Beard Foundation’s annual awards were announced, and a pitmaster was among the names that were otherwise a roll call of haute cuisine. Under the heading “Best Chef: Southwest” was the name Aaron Franklin—of Franklin Barbecue in Austin, Texas—who became the first barbecue-centric proprietor nominated as a chef. The James Beard Foundation has honored barbecue before. Louie…

bacon ribs

Bacon in the Time of PEDv

This little piggy went to the market, this little piggy stayed home … and this little piggy got chronic diarrhea and died. That’s no nursery rhyme. It’s what has happened to five million piglets since April of 2013 when the nearly one-hundred-percent fatal Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDv) first started reeking havoc on hog farms in the U.S. Just since January, 1.3 million piglets in 27 states have succumbed to the disease. At least one…

Photo by Nicholas McWhirter

Texas’s Best BBQ Sandwiches

At Prause Meat Market in La Grange, there is a green paper sign right next to the barbecue counter. It reads “Sorry We Do NOT Make Sandwiches.” It’s a reminder to customers that this is a meat market where meat—smoked or raw—is sold by the pound. If you want a sandwich, you’ve got to bring your own bread. Others in Texas are more accommodating. Some barbecue joints make a pretty incredible sandwich that goes beyond…

Jimmy Kimmel in Austin

Jimmy Kimmel and his sidekick Guillermo Rodriguez came to Austin for some SXSW scouting over the weekend. Kimmel will be taping his popular late night show in Austin during SXSW, and he was doing some advance barbecue scouting. Saturday began with Franklin Barbecue followed by Micklethwait Craft Meats just down the street. John Mueller tweeted the day before that he was expecting a visit from Kimmel, and that was indeed the third stop. Kimmel wrapped…

Lines Big Apple

Everybody Line Up

“Line are overrated.” This is the conclusion of economist Tyler Cowen in a recent article where he shared some of his principles for finding good restaurants. For Cowen, standing in line is a conformist activity, and the presence of a line is a not a good indicator of the quality of food inside. This principle was aimed at all restaurants, especially those that manufacture an unnecessary line, but it got me thinking: what does a line,…