The 11 Best BBQ Cities in America

February 20, 2015 - bbq set

By: Kevin Alexander and Liz Childers

Credit: Dan Gentile

Few styles of food are some-more gratifying and primal than barbecue. Meat and glow tend to do that arrange of thing. And while we’ve forked out the best grill spots in a country before, we’ve never sat down over a bruise of brisket and hashed out, not usually a best cities in a nation in that to eat it, though how those cities smoke-stack adult opposite any other. Well, until now.

Our ranking of America’s 11 tip grill cities is a initial in a array examining and arguing about both a best and a many underrated cities opposite a nation in a accumulation of a favorite food and splash categories. We judged any grill city on tradition, poise of style, technique, and density. We wish to put a opinions out there and hear yours, too. So what do we contend we start with beef and fire, and see where we go from there?

More: The 15 Best New BBQ Joints in America

Credit: Flickr/takaokun

11. Honolulu, HI

Okay, initial things first: to truly get a best cross-section of sold Hawaiian BBQ, we might have to transport a tiny bit outward of a city, too, but, even so, a indicate is clear: with a famous Kalua pork, Honolulu and a surrounding towns in Oahu have a BBQ enlightenment distinct anywhere else in a country. Of course, there are a Asian influences, like a tasty Korean inflected specialities during a Soup Nazi-esque Me’s BBQ (get a Kalbi Bar-b-q plate) or Gina’s for a BBQ bulgogi beef image lunch. But we can also go outward a city for an island take on a Southern technique, during places like Uncle Bobo’s (pork shoulder sandwich, all day), and Molly’s Smokehouse. Either way, we can’t truly speak about BBQ in a US though giving Hawaii a satisfactory shake.
Major players: Me’s BBQ, Uncle Bobo’s Smoked BBQ, Gina’s BBQ, Molly’s Smokehouse

Credit: Flickr/Joshua Bousel

10. Murphysboro, IL

It’s a extraordinary thing that a Midwestern state famous some-more for Chicago and a Great Lakes limit boasts one tiny city that has championship-level ‘cue in each character and meat. Thanks to one man, Mike Mills, Murphysboro, Illinois manages to be partial of a grill review — not only partial of it, though firmly, really naturally secure in it, notwithstanding being north of a traditional, smokey arenas. Mills runs 17th Street Bar Grill and is a male behind one of a winningest teams during a Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. He’s grill smart, well-studied, and, interjection to a dismissal from a constraints of informal bias, he’s mastered it all — baby behind ribs, luscious pulled pork, pink-ringed brisket slices — to a indicate that array masters from Texas Hillcountry to Carolina’s seashore are impressed.
Major players: 17th Street Bar Grill

Credit: Courtesy of Flickr/Jimmy Emerson, DVM

9. Greenville, SC

Those who evangelise a gospel of South Carolina grill do so with a self-assurance that’s tough to ignore. “We’ve got 4 opposite kinds of sauce!” they shout. “No one does a mustard salsa like us!” And they’re right. Though others might disagree for Columbia or even Charleston, we like Greenville for a vicinity of spots all portion adult classics like a BBQ sandwich with some Brunswick meal during Henry’s Smokehouse; a ribs, duck chopped combo during Mike Jeff’s; a strange Bucky’s for a pig image with cajun pinto beans and honeyed potato crunch, or — if you’re looking for something a tiny some-more cool — Smoke’N Jackets (potato skins pressed with pulled pork) and a beer-butt duck during Smoke on a Water.
Major players: Bucky’s Bar-B-Q, Henry’s Smokehouse, Mike and Jeff’s BBQ

Credit: Flickr/Joshua Bousel

8. Owensboro, KY

I’m going to assume you’ve never had mutton, so let me make a taste-picture: consider about how tough, tasteless pig shoulder becomes proposal and luscious and literally falls detached after a night in a smoker… and afterwards request that to lamb, a beef that’s already abounding and earthy, no matter how we prepare it. That’s mutton, and a tiny city of Owensboro in Daviess County is a epicenter of this sold and rare tradition, that alludes to a distant progressing time when sheep were abundant (historians have record of Abe Lincoln’s relatives portion BBQ mutton during their Kentucky wedding, so America). The segment also does pig shoulder and brisket over a same hickory coals, though you’re in Western Kentucky for a mutton, basted and served with a accumulation of sauces, a many famous of that is a black “dip” salsa of Worcestershire and vinegar and tomato pulp and sugar.

And once you’re convinced to a style, come behind in May for a International Bar-B-Que Festival when hickory-smoke pits for mutton and giant, effervescent vats of burgoo, a grill meal done with mutton, fill a town’s streets.
Major players: Moonlite Bar-B-Q Inn, Old Hickory Bar-B-Que, Henry’s Bougaloo BBQ

Credit: Andrew Zimmer/Thrillist

7. New York, NY

As a Southerner, we admittedly hatred essay this: New York City has a challenging grill scene, one of a best in a country. Whereas other grill epicenters that’re private from a heart of a cuisine have melded styles or polished specific, normal dishes, New York separate grill out in a possess special way, as a city tends to do.

NYC’s BBQ can be compared to what folks in Southern cities (those ones that have an get explain to ‘cue) would call new money. There are no third or fourth or — let’s be honest — even second-generation pitmasters behind a smokers; a grill is imagination (finishing salt!) and requires million dollar movement systems and pairs good with specialty qualification microbrews and reaches a moist, proposal finished state underneath a sharp shade of many a hipster beard. But from a Carolina-trained whole sow set-up in Bushwick to an East Village mark whose “Texalina” salsa covers pink-ringed brisket and greasy pulled pork, each mark boasts serious, complicated believe of a qualification and, importantly, a low honour for grill in all a iterations… and it is damn delicious.
Major players: Briskettown, Fletcher’s Brooklyn BBQ, Mighty Quinn’s, Arrogant Swine, Morgan’s Brooklyn Barbecue, Hometown BBQ

Head to for a tip 6 cities in America for BBQ and see if your city done a list!

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