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Jul 18, 2006 08:40 PM

Any suggestions for good Carolina BBQ?

My family and I are driving from CT to Ocracoke NC and one of the things that make the drive bearable is looking forward to some good BBQ. Are there any outstanding places that someone can suggest with the perameters of the following: We travel I95s to I64e until we get to 168s to 158s to 12s. Are there any good stops along the way or do we need to take I95s all the way to Goldsboro through Kinston (one of my favorite places is Kings BBQ in Kinston. That Pig on a Puppy is HEAVEN!!!) to the Cedar Island ferry? Thanks in advance for any help!

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  1. I am not familiar with any traditional Barbeque places coming in on 158. But if you choose to come in through Goldsboro/Kinston (way out of the way - but a good hound will travel for good food), then I would recomend that you try Wilber's in Goldsboro, rather than Kings. Kings has a big country buffet, but for BBQ, Wilbers still cooks on wood pits and is my favorite for eastern NC style chopped barbeque.

    There are many who also swear by Parkers, on 301 south in Wilson. Their family style special - all you can eat BBQ, fried chicken (the chicken is limited to two pieces per person) brunswick stew, cole slaw, boiled potatoes, hush puppies and corn sticks is served family style and is a big favorite. Usually a crowd, but you want to be there at prime lunch and dinner time, as the quality goes down at off-peak times. I like Parkers, but don't think the BBQ is quite as good as Wilber's. You can stay on I-95 to Wilson, and after eating then take 301 back up to Rocky Mt. (18 miles) and then go east on 264 to Williamston and then 17 to Elizabeth City and hook up ther with 158.

    1 Reply
    1. re: N2Chow

      Thanks much for this!!! Agreed with the point that a good hound will travel for food. And I always will!!! We have very limited experience w/this area and the reason we liked Kings so much was because of that sandwich. I will try and convince my wife (she is the easy one, its the 5yr old twins and their 3 yr old sister that need to be convinced!) to take the "long way" and try and hit Wilbers. If so I will be sure to report back. Again, THX MUCH!

    2. You can't go wrong with Wilber's or Parkers. However, a good hidden jewel is Ken's Grill on US 70 in LaGrange (just outside Goldsboro, headed east). They only cook bbq on Wednesday and Saturday and it always sells out. The ribs they cook along with the rest of the pig are reserved several days in advance so you have virtually no chance of getting those. If your schedule permits it, try this little place. It's run by 2 brothers who took it over from their father, if I remember correctly. Get there early, at least by 11:30 AM, if you want the bbq.

      1. There is also a Parker's in Greenville NC. I sure do miss their cornsticks and brunswick stew.

        1. we went to parkers and wilburs last year. The fried chicken at parkers was pretty good but the bbq was just ok. Wilburs was great...if your schedule permits, you really should not miss it.

          2 Replies
          1. re: vinouspleasure

            We were just at Wilbur's for the first time last week on our way from CT to Wilmington, NC. It was fantastic. Pulled pork and fried chicken both good, but the pork stood out. Also, I tried (somewhat unsuccessfully) to get the recipe for their potato salad. Simple, but delicious! After 10 days on the road and several just ok "roadfood" stops, Wilbur's restored our faith in the Stern's.

            1. re: LizATL

              I agree - skip King's and go to Wilbur's or try out Bill Ellis BBQ. And, please don't let my screen name fool you - I grew up in NC.

              For another fun stop in Wilson, NC, try out Dick's Hot Dog Stand. I've not been in years, but it is a great old hot dog joint with crinkle cut french fries to die for.

              Also, a good suggestion for any drive through the south when trying to feed a family would be a stop at a Golden Corral. Look for a newer location as they have the best buffets. But, they offer very nice salad bars with fresh ingredients, really good friend chicken, lots of dessert choices. etc. Buffet is less than $10 for adults. Oh - and those fresh baked rolls with the sweet honey butter - YUM!