Next stop on my carnivorously inclined Deep South expedition was the beautiful and historic port city of Charleston, South Carolina where a new breed of pitmaster appears to be taking over the culinary scene with an approach to making wood fired, slow cooked meats that’s as yummy and inventive as it is a mouth-watering tribute to the area’s great BBQ traditions.
Unfortunately, recent flooding kept me from hitting some of the tastiest parts of South Carolina. But I was glad to hear Charleston was up and running with two amazing BBQ restaurants welcoming me and proudly sharing with me the chance to sample ample portions of what they do best.
Fiery Ron’s Home Team BBQ
1205 Ashley River Rd, Charleston, South Carolina 29407
The best quote from my trip to sum up why folks tend to gravitate toward the BBQ biz came from Home Team owner/Executive Chef Aaron “Fiery Ron” Siegel when I sat down for a chow and chat with him and Home Team Chef Madison Ruckel:
It’s just fun building a fire.
Hear! Hear! And it’s even more fun tearing into a chunk of something slow roasted in the fires stoked by Seigel, Ruckel and crew with every lick of flame a moreish homage to the best of BBQ craft. Indeed, the brisket might as well had been Texan as its flavour, texture and moisture harkened me taste buds back several days to what I’d tried in Austin and Dallas. The pulled pork and dry rubbed ribs hollered Memphis to me, and the Brunswick stew geared me up for my upcoming drive through Georgia.
Dig in online at hometeambbq.com.
Swig & Swine
1217 Savannah Highway, Charleston, South Carolina 29407
Not all that far from Home Team’s Ashley River location is Chef Anthony Dibernardo’s Swig & Swine, where I was blown away by every bite had from the homey but expertly cooked line up of dishes. Of particular note were the pork rinds with Tabasco honey and blue cheese (wow, just wow), the smoked wings, and the melt-in-your-mouth smoked pork belly.
But I’m focusing too much on the “swine” half of the Dibernardo equation. The superb “swig” at his BBQ gets equal billing. A haven for craft beer lovers, the bar at S&S was as masterfully curated as the menu. I loved sipping my way through a range of Charleston and Low Country brews from River Dog Brewery, Holy City Brewing, and Palmetto Brewing Company.
Find out more at swigandswinebbq.com.
Beyond the Q
King Charles Inn
237 Meeting Street, Charleston, South Carolina 29401
Sitting pretty on Meeting Street and a short stroll from King Street, the City Market, the port and a great variety of Charleston’s best restaurants, shops and attraction (as well as historic Mother Emanuel AME Church), my comfy and spacious room at the beautiful boutique hotel, King Charles Inn, was a handy and handsome base for rambling around town between BBQ tastings. For details, go to kingcharlesinn.com.
Learn more about Charleston at explorecharleston.com and the great state of South Carolina at discoversouthcarolina.com. For loads of help planning your trip to anywhere in the States, go to VisitTheUSA.com. And please be sure to keep an eye out for more BBQ Bound posts to come!