April 26, 2015

OUCH: I Once Ate Barbecue Pork That Was Smoked in an Old Clothes Dryer: That’s how much barbecue sucks in San Francisco. Though, honestly, that wouldn’t necessarily have to be bad. And, in fact, in this case it wasn’t: “It was really, really good. In fact, it was the only edible barbecue sandwich I’ve been able to find in the entire Bay Area—and I’ve looked, I’ve looked really hard.” Which kind of undercuts the great headline.

But is this really a surprise? I mean, the place is a cultural wasteland: “People in San Francisco don’t have any idea how to make barbecue. They also don’t understand iced tea, chicken and waffles, or biscuits and gravy—but it’s the barbecue that really gets me.”

UPDATE: Reader Austin Waine emails:

I grew up in Memphis, went to UT (had several friends who were your students), lived in Nashville for 4 years, and have lived in SF for the last 3.

When I moved here, the BBQ was suspect; but there have been several spots producing good ‘cue. It’s not quite the Wasteland the author described.

http://4505meats.com/ These guys have *killer* brisket. Check out their site background photo and tell me that doesn’t look tasty.

http://sneakysbbq.blogspot.com/ This guy has an underground operation consisting of an email list and weekly pop-ups at SF area bars. He makes killer pork ribs, pulled pork, and even vegan using jackfruit. He uses high quality meat and smokes it in almond wood that doesn’t impart a lot of smoke flavor and brings out the flavor of the meat.

Well, good.

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