One of the beauties of the journalism industry is even when you leave it, you’re never far from a friend. I recently had the pleasure of meeting two friends – one old, one new – from the Chicago Tribune, who were on their way through a BBQ Roadtrip. Be sure to read up about there travels here: http://bbqroadtrip.tumblr.com/.
The guys are on a mission to find great, regional barbecue, and when I heard they were coming my way, I made sure our paths intersected. Kevin invited me to join them in Lexington, where they would be eating at two different restaurants (two, really?). Like true food critics, they had small portions at each place – admitting that they’ve sampled as many as four different eateries in one day.
We first went to the Bar-B-Q Center, where we started with the barbecue soup, which was basically a vegetable soup with chopped pork up top:
It was great and tasted exactly how it’s described. For our entrees, we had the simple chopped pork “platter,” which means slow-smoked pork pulled off the shoulder, chopped and served in a flimsy paper bowl. With a side of red slaw and hushpuppies, of course. It was tasty and authentic.
My favorite thing, however, was the fried pork sandwich. It had mustard on it and I thought Kevin was going to die of happiness.
Next, we went to Lexington BBQ, which is supposed to be THE place for barbecue in Lexington. We were disappointed to learn that the fried pork-skin sandwiches were off the menu, so we ordered the “outside brown” chopped pork platter. That outside brown is genius. Right under the pork skin, it’s slightly crispy on the outside, but tender and delicious on the inside. This was my favorite thing we ate.
The slaw was “white,” as you can see. With a side of hushpuppies, of course.
For dessert, we got the Karo Nut Pie (pecan pie), with an awesome square of vanilla ice cream up top that melted all over it.
Thanks again to Kevin and Keith for inviting me – and for bringing all the Chi-Tribune swag and Chicago-style relish. I hope you guys enjoy all the barbecue sauce you picked up on your Southern travels. Until we meet again!