Izzy’s BBQ Addiction

It is always nice to see a bona fide Barbejew making headlines.  Check out the story of Jewish barbecue man Sruly Eidelman’s efforts to open up a Kosher barbecue joint at http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/short-takes/kosher-barbecue-pop-up-seeks-permanent-home.

Mr. Eidelman sounds like a smart man, at least based on quotes like this one about barbecue: “I think that more Jews need to try this kind of food.”   Still no word on whether he plans to get into whole hog cooking some day, but somehow I suspect not…

Farewell, Bob Kantor

It saddens me to share the news that Bob Kantor, founder of Memphis Minnie’s in San Francisco, passed away earlier this week.

I got to know Bob a little over the last few years, having shared a BBQ lunch with him and his (in his words) “shiksa” Gail, interviewed him for this website, and kept in touch from time to time by email. Many people knew Bob much better than I did, of course, but even in the short time I knew him it was obvious he was generous, kind and had a great sense of humor.  He was also a hell of a cook, and he cared a lot about barbecue traditions even as he made his name running a funky, creative but wood-fired BBQ joint in the Lower Haight.

The best tribute I can offer Bob is to make sure you’ve seen the interview he did for this website a few years back.  It was easily one of my favorite experiences running the site, and I enjoyed revisiting the interview when I heard the sad news of his death.

I understand from the general manager of Memphis Minnie’s that the plan is to keep the restaurant going to honor Bob.  I wish them well, and send my regrets to all of Bob’s family and friends, and to the many relative strangers like me who were lucky enough to spend some time with him.  May he rest in peace, and I sure hope sauce is optional in the afterlife… but sake is plentiful.

(NC BBQ) Anarchy in the U.K.

I’m four years late on this one, but as any true barbecue fan knows good things are worth the wait.  Loyal reader Porcophile recently emailed me with the link to an article published in London’s the Guardian newspaper in June 2009. The subject?  You guessed it, North Carolina barbecue.

Journalist Joshua Stein is a Brooklyn-based Barbejew, judging by his name, who at the time wrote for the Guardian.  (Where are you now, Joshua Stein?  The Guardian needs you, as it’s NC BBQ coverage has really slipped over the years).  The article Mr. Stein authored is a fairly pro forma overview of North Carolina barbecue, so I’m bringing it to your attention only as a further indicator that North Carolina barbecue will someday takeover the world.  No word on whether the Brits like their barbecue served over a jacket potato, but I’d be surprised to learn otherwise.

Although we owe our eternal gratitude to the Spaniards for introducing the hog to America (thanks Columbus, and a belated Happy Holiday to you!) , it is good to know that others in Europe are being introduced to slow-cooked swine.

Will the Real BBQ Jew Please Stand Up?

Well, at long last I may have met my Barbejew match: Ari White of Hakadosh BBQ.  Get the full, kosher scoop at http://blogs.forward.com/the-jew-and-the-carrot/175887/the-holy-grail-of-kosher-barbeque-hakadosh-bbq/

Impressive work, my Jewish brother, but no need to give me a call until you start barbecuing pork.

A True BBQ Jew

BBQ Jews and barbecue lovers everywhere have a new place to visit in The Windy City.  Read all about it, and save some ‘cue for me!

Texas’ BBQ Jew?

It looks like Porky LeSwine may have a new best friend, or perhaps arch-enemy.  The Editor of Texas Monthly Magazine is one Jake Silverstein (a Jewish name if there ever was one), and the latest issue of his magazine is all about barbecue.  Texas barbecue, that is.
http://www.myfoxaustin.com/video/videoplayer.swf?dppversion=11212

Texas Monthly’s Barbecue Issue: MyFoxAUSTIN.com

World Kosher BBQ Championship

In case you missed it this past weekend, BBQ Jews from across the country (well, at least from a few metropolitan areas) descended on Memphis for the 23rd annual World Kosher Barbecue Championship.  For an event preview, see this article.  For event results, check… actually, do you really care who won?  It’s the concept that is most interesting.

From the contest website: “In a city where treif BBQ restaurants far outnumber synagogues, it was only natural that a creative team at the oldest, Jewish Orthodox congregation in the Mid-South, Anshei Sphard-Beth El Emeth (ASBEE), decided twenty-four years ago to offer a kosher alternative to the long-standing Memphis BBQ contest of the swine variety.”

Sounds like a good time and good food. Not as good as eating pork, of course, but good nevertheless.

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