Wednesday, August 29, 2007


When I read about the North Carolina BBQ Trail months ago, I knew exactly where Emily and I would be going on a road trip this year. Of course, with 25 restaurants on the trail and only 5 days of vacation, I knew we couldn't visit ALL of them, but goshdarnit, we sure were gonna do our best.

Emily picked me up from work Thursday night and we headed south in her Jetta. We stayed overnight with her cousin outside of DC and then it was off the next morning for our first BBQ stop - BUT FIRST we made a pitstop in Fredericksburg, Virginia for Carl's Frozen Custard. They still use an original frozen custard machine from the 1940s and DAMN it's good. The vanilla is like eating frozen whipped cream - And I know what frozen whipped cream tastes like, I used to secretly eat Cool Whip from the freezer with a spoon. Definitely worth the stop.

We stopped for late lunch/old fogie early bird dinner around 4:30 at Bill Ellis Barbeque in Wilson, NC- a buffet! Basically, you walk in, pay your entry fee and then go hog (ha, no pun intended) wild - but, as the signs around the restaurant remind you, "eat as much as you want, but eat what you take."

Now, North Carolina BBQ is all about pork. You've got your pig pickin' (which we had here) where you pull pork straight off a pit-smoked pig and, more often, chopped pork. Finely chopped pork looks almost like tuna salad, whereas the coarse choppped (my preference) is a little bit chunkier (duh). As for the sauce, it varies around the state (I will explain this more later) but is generally a thin sauce with a mostly vinegar base.

BUT, like I said, here we got to pull the meat straight from the dead pig. MMMmmmmm.

Bill has his own fleet of semi trucks to deliver his delicious pork nationwide - yippee!

With our bellies full we drove west toward Beufort, where we would relax on the beach and trade BBQ for seafood for a couple days...

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Sunday night we had a little dinner party to mourn the loss of Julia (she's moving out of our apartment and in with her boyfriend). I was already going through BBQ withdrawal and also wanted to share my wondrous epicurian jaunt through North Carolina with the gang, so I made a slow-cooked pork shoulder, long and lean hushpuppies (my new favorite thing in the world) and some Western Carolina slaw. Western Carolina slaw is like regular cole slaw except it has a little bit of ketchup and bbq sauce in it. MMMMMmmm. A big success all around, I'd say.

Did you know a whole pork shoulder only costs $6.10? If they didn't take ten hours to cook, I'd be making at least one a week from now on.

Don't worry, there were veggies involved too.

Hushpuppy dough.

Hushpuppies (or as I like to call them "Fried Gold").

Let's just take a look at one last beauty shot of that pork...

DAAAaaaang, Gina.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

The end of an era.

Friday night was the last ever FC Kitchen Sink game. What with me having torn my ACL, Steph moving to Arizona, and assorted other drop-outs, there aren't enough players for the team next season. Hopefully after surgery, I'll be able to be back on the pitch one day...

Another era ended on Thursday night.

We've been going to The Heights for like 8 years now, but no one really lives up there anymore and Steph's moving so when Emily and I got back from North Carolina, we went out with the Columbia girls for one last Heights happy hour.

uh, yeah, and we taught Katie what "motorboating" is.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Emily and I just got back from our North Carolina BBQ tour and I promise to post pictures and commentary soon.

Until then, here are some news items that excite me:

I'm glad to hear about the new American Gladiators.

Could I unknowingly be the best in the world at something?

What about descendants of Robert E. Lee - are they invited?

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

I finally did it.
I actually managed to injure myself.

This has been my view since Friday.

Okay, that's a lie. It would be my worst nightmare to be stuck inside. So, I've been venturing out on crutches a little bit - much to the chagrin of my armpits and right leg, which is doing all the work.

I did make it to Coney Island for the Cyclones game on Sunday. We were supposed to get Marty Markowitz bobbleheads but they were all out when we got there. I was pretty sad about that, but the sausage, beer and cotton candy made it a little bit better.

I finally get to go to the doctor tomorrow. Fingers crossed that I didn't actually tear anything.