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Oct 16, 2010 07:49 PM

Seeking "must visit" NC barbecue joints

Hi All,

I run a website on North Carolina barbecue and want your advice: What are the barbecue joints in NC that I absolutely must visit? I'm not talking about the pretty good places but the really outstanding, died-and-gone-to-heaven (or hell) ones. I'm looking forward to seeing this list, so thanks in advance!

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  1. For eastern NC, the NC BBQ Society trail has all of the great ones, save Blackbeard's on Alt 64 in Conetoe and Bum's in Ayden. If I had to rank them, I'd say:

    1. Pete Jones/Skylight Inn, Ayden
    2. Blackbeard's, Conetoe
    3. Grady's, Dudley
    4. B's, Greenville
    5. Jack Cobb's, Farmville
    6. Wilber's, Goldsboro
    7. Bum's, Ayden

    I live in Greenville, and the first two are the ones I eat at the most.

    1. Lexington Barbecue and Skylight Inn, fer sure. B's and Wlber's , probably.

      Skylight Inn
      4618 S Lee St, Ayden, NC

      Lexington Barbecue
      100 Smokehouse Lane, Lexington, NC 27295

      1. Surely add Allen & Sons BBQ.
        6203 Millhouse Rd
        Chapel Hill, NC 27516-8101
        (919) 942-7576

        1 Reply
        1. re: Bluemold

          Seconded- both Allen and Sons and Wilber's. Would add Clyde Cooper's in Raleigh as well.

        2. Just curious--you run an NC barbecue restaurants web site, but you don't know which ones are best?

          4 Replies
          1. re: arbyunc

            My thoughts exactly! I'd add The Pit in Raleigh to this list, because it represents a different take on q.

            1. re: arbyunc

              His website is pretty darn good. He's already been to many of the top ones, including some hidden gems only on "in the know" people's radars. I'm surprised he started this thread as open-ended as he did.

              1. re: mikeh

                Seconded. I read it pretty regularly.

                1. re: Naco

                  Oh, yeah. I read and respect the reviews at BBQ Jew as well.

                  In that case here are my tips:

                  Big Al's BBQ: this is a bbq truck often parked in Rolesville serving various items including chopped 'que. I had an excellent brisket plate there a while back that made me want to return for the 'que.

                  I ate at The Pig in Chapel Hill again last night. The chopped 'que was very good. The sauce was spot on. The meat had a nice mix of outside brown. Everything else we had was great as well. The best ribs I've had in ages. Well worth a trip.

            2. Is your co-hort going to join you or are these solo ventures? Not that it would matter much. B's from what I hear is almost like trying to score a high end table at a fancy place in NY. If you don't time it right, you'll miss it. I am from the Kinston area and there use to be some decent bbq there. That area has Ken's Grill, Wilbur's, King's (which is an institution but thats about it), a place called Chap's use to be good but I couldn't tell you about that anymore. Have you seen Bob Garner's series on Q? It is a little outdated but some spots still stand the test of time.