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Unread 08-02-2009, 12:50 PM   #102
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first, prior to my following soapbox.. i want to point something out.. This aint news folks. we have heard the "BBQ is Pork" theory many times. Its filed right next to BBQ is Brisket, BBQ is a party in the yard, and frito pie comes from Illinois. These guys said it best.
And should put this thread in perspective.

now for my soapbox.. (because i can)

Im looking at this thread thru 2 different pairs of eyes of The BBQ Brethren.

1 - A BBQ enthusiast who has been living, following and learning the craft of "BBQ Cooking' for 25 years now. Any by the craft, i mean not only the cooking, but the history.

2 - A member of The Brethren. And we all know that in this group, there is NO ONE WAY. We also know that BBQ is a GLOBALLY REGIONAL thing and in our journey to achieve BBQ nirvana, we will learn the variations and master as many as possible. Our pits are open, as is our minds. There is no one way, from the steel to the meat. We want to learn them all.

As the enthusiast, I see in this thread, the typical age old debate of the History of BBQ. I have seen it dozens and dozens of times from books, to discovery channel, to to the food network, to internet, to the backyards of folks across the country.

Everyone from the individual regions has there own interpretation and some feel a little stronger than the others. What I also see typical here is that 2 regions have the most steadfast (self proclaimed) factual(opinions) of what is BBQ. Texas and Carolina. In fact, just this past Friday, on Man v. Food that referenced the very topic of this thread. One segment was from a NC BBQ Joint in Carolina, BBQ IS PORK and nothing else, and sauce is vinegar

The pitmaster(of 40 years)in this place cooked 2 120 lb hogs every night to serve to his packed restaurant. The patrons there all agreed that if its BBQ, its pork and nothing else, yet he did serve 'other meats'. So alas... this must be true.. ok in that region. They also said that the ONLY sauce is a vinegar based. (but what happened to the other guy who said its mustard based last week?).. yeah well.. whatever.

Wander around the south and you will see that in some places its "pork", others its ribs, some want vinegar, others want mustard. Hugh, is presenting his regional rendition of the Carolinas. Yes Hugh, its the one you accept. Its up to the reader to decide if it is factual with no other options, or just another version form one of the may history books. The Kansas crowd I'm sure has a different version, and me being from NY, where BBQ has no steadfast roots, we accept it all as theory.

Now set aside the passion and emotion that some feel makes the presented facts truth and absorb it as additional facts to add to your archives of global BBQ history. File it alongside our Funky(barbefunkomamawtf) ones verison that "if it aint stickburner brisket it aint right and all BBQ came from Texas."

Difference is that over time, we have come to know Donny and his tongue in cheek presentations and many have learned to accept them for what they are, The funky ones representations are somewhat legendary here. These 'outside of the box presentations have helped many members and confused many others. We all know now its is up to the reader to decide whats right for them, what is trash talk and what is success. This thread was another attempt to go outside of the box.

Now, from the eyes of A Brethren. I hear whatever is said. I absorb, I learn, I experiment, and I decide which works for me. Is any one way wrong? Nope. Its just another way. I have enough experience to know that whatever ponce de leon did with a buffalo on his way to new jersey is just another piece of the history book written by someone who was in that particular spot at that point, and another piece of history was being written simultaneously on the other side of the world where someone was cooking a pig on a spit over a hole in the ground in Bora Bora. Fact v. theory v. hypothesis. A fact is a concept or action whose truth can be proven. There are NO FACTS regarding the origin of BBQ, just theory. No one knows who cooked the first 'thing' over the first hole in the ground. What we have is theory. Learn, and respect them all.

In this small piece of the internet, BBQ is gramatically correct in any form. We accept it for what it is in the company we are keeping and dont insist on correcting anyone. Its the way to learn and to expand the knowledge to make the true pitmaster. Take that pitmaster who has been cooking whole hogs for 40 years in a barrel. Put him at a KC rib joint or a texas brisket shack and let him show me his stuff. If his minds been open, he will produce BBQ nirvana, but then again, he may refuse to cook them ribs or those briskets or yardbird becase its not BBQ and we will all go hungry. But if he has our pig on his tee shirt, we're all gonna eat!

That being said, this thread is back to discuss the regional differences of BBQ, in all forms. What I ask is that it is taken in the spirit of this forum. You want to contribute, remember one thing.

There is NO ONE WAY.
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