Is the new barbecue joint coming to Chapel Hill The Barbecue Joint?

A tip of the snout to Dave Filpus, who writes at his NC Barbecue Musings blog that a new barbecue joint is opening in the space where the barbecue joint called The Barbecue Joint was located before its doors were padlocked shut. There are also rumors that The Barbecue Joint that used to be located in the place where the new barbecue joint is opening will return but in another location and maybe with another name or maybe under the name The Barbecue Joint.  Confused yet?  So am I. 

According to the website/Facebook page for The Pig, the new place opening up, the restaurant will be “Bringing regional flavors and local ingredients to the party in your tummy, featuring whole-hog barbecue, cola-braised pork belly sandwiches and Mee-Ma’s low-country, house-smoked, chicken-fried tofu.”  Yep, you read that right. 

Stay tuned and I am sure more details about The Pig will be revealed soon… I am wondering if it is actually the rumored return of The Barbecue Joint, as the combo of yuppified barbecue and similarly untraditional dishes (tofu) offered next to fairly traditional BBQ certainly seems similar. [The plot thickens:  since drafting this post a few days ago Dave Filpus has posted more info on his site, check it out.]

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Porky’s Pulpit: Shame on Food Lion

Regional grocery store giant Food Lion is based in Salisbury, NC, one of the most important (if underappreciated) barbecue towns in North Carolina due to its role as perhaps the birthplace of so-called “Lexington-style” barbecue.  Thus, one might expect that the folks at Food Lion would understand how to properly use the word “barbecue.”  One would be wrong. 

Food Lion is currently offering a promotion called “Backyard BBQ with Keith Urban.”  Does this contest offer as a grand prize a Salisbury area pig pickin’ with the New Zealand-born pseudo-country star?  No, it does not.  Rather, by purchasing a bag of Kingsford Charcoal or a bottle of (ahem, cough cough) KC Masterpiece sauce, shoppers are entered into a contest to attend a “BBQ” (i.e., a cookout) in Nashville, TN with Mr. Urban.  According to Food Lion’s website, no purchase is necessary (except for the charcoal or sauce?) to win this “intimate VIP experience.”  

I am sure Keith Urban can throw a mean cookout, but no intimate VIP experiences for me, thank you very much.  I’ll stick to pork shoulders cooked over hickory coals and flavored with some Salisbury-made dip.

Backstage at Hog Day

The four-person judging team from Hillsborough Hog Day 2010, below from left: Dale Volberg Reed, John Shelton Reed, Joel Grodensky, and Ed Mitchell (not pictured, Chief Judge David Hunt).

They look pretty good considering they just tasted barbecue from 35 cooking teams!

It’s Swine Time for Israel

Using pigs for medical research as a front for being able to raise and eat the state-outlawed-swine: Only in Israel!

In a fascinating article that manages to interweave Judaism, pork chops, Marxism, colorectal cancer, and a collection of decorative pigs, the BBC looks at a kibbutz that raises swine (for research! Yeah…that’s the ticket!).

OK, the medical experiments may not be, strictly speaking, an excuse to raise and eat swine. But somewhere in your heart of hearts, Kibbutz Lahav members, we both know where your primary motivation lies. To which I say: Well done!

Next stop on the Barbecue Trail??


Life’s hard. And I’m sure it’s even harder with the threat of mortar attacks never far off. Why not enjoy the divine swine??

As photographed, the kibbutz’ main hog cooker is Ofer Doron is partial to the pork chop. Trust us, Ofer, if you make some barbecue and do it right, you’ll have that pork ban lifted in no time. And it would probably earn him the chance to fill BBQ Jew’s long-vacant Israel Correspondent slot. Give us a shout if you think you’re up to the task, Ofer.

iPad Barbecue: Where There’s Smoke, There’s Pixels

Here’s hoping your July 4th cookout was less pathetic than this tech geeky one.  I guess there really is an app for everything, but I think your hog-tech gadget budget would be better spent on this pork-based iPhone stylus.

Patriotism Carolina-Style

It’s America’s birthday this weekend and one of the oldest cities in North Carolina has big plans to celebrate.  What better way to celebrate Independence Day than to build the biggest barbecue sandwich on record?  At least that’s what Tommy Moore, the owner and pitmaster of Moore’s Olde Tyme Barbecue in New Bern figures as he sets his sights on the Guinness world record for Largest Barbecue Open Sandwich (Editor’s note: I’m not sure exactly what that category means, but who cares!). 

According to the Sun Journal, the big ol’ BBQ on a bun will be unveiled at New Bern’s Fourth of July celebration, which this year marks the town’s 300th birthday. Oh, and since New Bern is also the birthplace of Pepsi (aka “Brad’s Drink,”) you may want to wash your share of that sandwich down with an ice cold one.