Sunday, September 13, 2009

The best chopped pork BBQ I've yet had

As long-time readers and friends know, I've eaten a lot of BBQ over the years. I've eaten it in many variations, from pork to brisket to ribs and on and on, and in many states, from Texas to California to Massachusetts to New York to Tennessee to North Carolina. During my over three decades in this state, I've come to love the pulled and chopped pork that is North Carolina barbecue.

So it is with some embarrassment that I must admit that last night I tasted for the first time the best chopped park 'que I've ever had--and it was at a place that has been in Raleigh for a long time, The Pit.

I don't know how long The Pit has been in business, but it's not a new business. Its owner and head, Ed Mitchell, is more than a little famous in barbecue circles, counting among his achievements a defeat of Bobby Flay in a 'que contest. (Go, Ed! Flay has never been a favorite of mine.) So, I should have eaten there a long time ago, but I just never got around to it.

The most amazing dish of the evening was the appetizer--enough food that three of us split it and could easily have shared it with a fourth--a plate they call Barbecue Fries. Take greasy, old-school fries. Mix with chopped pork barbecue. Add chives and a side of BBQ ranch dress; ignore the dressing. Cover it all with pimiento cheese, and then melt that cheese.

The result is a disk that is completely and utterly wrong, a combination no one should have assembled--and yet so damn good that every single bite brought sounds of pleasure from all of us.

It also conjured images of heart attacks, but, hey, great dishes are not cheap.

For my main, I tried the combination of pork ribs, which a friend had extolled, and chopped barbecue. The ribs were good, but the chopped pork was amazing--spicier than some would like, but perfect for my taste.

Thirty-one years in this state, thirty in this city, and I'm just now trying The Pit. Amazing. At least it didn't take me any longer.


Michelle said...

I have to admit, pulled pork is one of my all time favorite dishes. Those fries sound like a bit of heaven on earth even if the sound of your arteries closing is audible. Sometimes you have to suffer for your art. I am jealous.

Mark said...

That dish really was an amazing combination of fats. Yummy!


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