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Tales from the pits, a Texas BBQ podcast featuring trendsetters, leaders, and icons from the barbecue industry
42 minutes | Nov 21, 2022
Ep 190 Season Three Recap
For our last episode of season three we took a look back at another incredible year in barbecue and highlight some of our favorite bites and memories from a busy 2022. Thanks again to our wonderful sponsors, listeners and guests for making this year so amazing! We're proud to partner with Pitts and Spitts for this episode. Please visit www.pittsandspitts.com/tales and use promo code tales for a special spice rub inclusion with your purchase of $500 or more from this trusted Houston pit builder. We have begun planning for 2023. If you know of a place we need to get to, or get back to please reach out and let us know!
68 minutes | Nov 7, 2022
Ep 189 - Chris Prieto Prime BBQ
Christopher Prieto, aka The Barbecue Nerd, has had one of the more unique journeys through the barbecue world that you’re likely to find. From his storied competition cooking career to his work with veterans and opening his first restaurant, Christopher’s story of faith, determination and service is an inspiring one. If you’re anywhere near the Raleigh, North Carolina area, Prime BBQ is a must stop for Christopher’s menu of inspired barbecue meats and sides. Restaurant Instagram: primebbq Christopher’s Instagram: barbecue_nerd https://prime-bbq.com/ 403 KNIGHTDALE STATION RUN KNIGHTDALE, NC 27545 Open TUES-SAT 11:00-SOLD OUT
47 minutes | Oct 24, 2022
Ep.188 Bourbon Bonus Episode
During our recent trip to Kentucky we decided to record a special bonus episode about our bourbon experience including a blind tasting we each did. The moral of the story for bourbon with us is this: drink what you like, not what the internet tells you to like! Tune in to hear the details and please give us some feedback on the episode. We are always going to be a barbecue podcast, but it’s fun to explore other topics from time to time.
43 minutes | Oct 10, 2022
Ep. 187 Red Hog Butchery
We are fans of the crafts of butchery and were pleased to spend time with some of the crew at Red Hog Artisan Meat in Louisville, Kentucky on a recent road trip. Butchery, charcuterie, and dry aging are on full display at Red Hog. Their restaurant and butcher shop provides Louisville an outlet for the highest quality meats both for home cooking purposes or for top notch restaurant meal. Aaron Sortman, James Andrews, and Dustin Olsen are three of the key members of this ambitious operation that breaks down whole animals, cures a variety of pork cuts, and dry ages beef for Red Hog’s restaurant and meat counter. Tune in to hear their story which includes a barbecue component as Dustin and crew are doing monthly BBQ services at Red Hog! Red Hog: http://www.redhogartisanmeat.com/ 2622 Frankfort Avenue Louisville, KY 40206 Open Tuesday - Saturday We're proud to partner with Pitts and Spitts for this episode. Please visit www.pittsandspitts.com/tales and use promo code tales for a special spice rub inclusion with your purchase of $500 or more from this trusted Houston pit builder.
43 minutes | Sep 26, 2022
Ep.186 Fox Bros BBQ New Location Takes Flight
Brothers Jonathan and Justin Fox grew up in Texas, moved to Atlanta, and over time have built an amazing barbecue footprint in that area. From humble beginnings of backyard barbecue parties to eventually opening their first restaurant, the Fox brothers have continued to grow their business. Now fifteen years into being restaurant owners, they opened a massive second location serving their signature menu of barbecue focused favorites with creative touches. As new opportunities have come about for them to grow their brand, they’ve seized them all while keeping a focus on quality. Never ones to settle, the Fox brothers have now turned their attention to a new counter service style spot they’re building in the Brookhaven area north of Atlanta that’s slated to open in 2023.
72 minutes | Sep 12, 2022
Ep. 185 An Epic BBQ and Bourbon Roadtrip
If you've listened to our show you know we love road trips and experiencing different BBQ across the U.S. We traveled through ten states over six days, traversing over 3,400 miles to try over a dozen barbecue places that served different regional styles and visited multiple distilleries for a variety of different experiences. Tune in to hear what stood out along the way and learn a little bit about the different barbecue and bourbon we got to sample. We're proud to partner with Pitts and Spitts for this episode. Please visit www.pittsandspitts.com/tales and use promo code tales for a special spice rub inclusion with your purchase of $500 or more from this trusted Houston pit builder.
39 minutes | Aug 29, 2022
Ep. 184 Pitmasters answer our listener’s questions
We asked our listeners what questions they’d like to ask pitmasters, and as always you came through with some good ones! We sent out questionnaires to several of the best in the barbecue world and many were kind enough to respond. Want to know what Todd David, Lane Milne, Evan LeRoy, Leonard Botello, Arnis Robbins and Joe Zavala have to say about things like tallow, prime grade beef, reheating brisket, their favorite bites in BBQ and more? Tune in for this fun episode. We're proud to partner with Pitts and Spitts for this episode. Please visit www.pittsandspitts.com/tales and use promo code tales for a special spice rub inclusion with your purchase of $500 or more from this trusted Houston pit builder.
51 minutes | Aug 15, 2022
Ep. 183 BBQ, Tacos, and how to support your local BBQ Joint
Our recent trip to the Rio Grande Valley was filled with so many memorable food experiences. From innovative new school barbecue to classic barbacoa to chef driven tacos and even an over 100 year old gordita place serving out of an alley, it’s a trip we’ll be thinking about for quite some time. We go over all our stops on this trip and highlight all the standouts. We know the cost of everything in life has gone up considerably over the last few years. Barbecue has certainly not been immune to these rising costs. In this episode we also gives you some tips on how to keep supporting your favorite barbecue places while being mindful that we all have budgets for our disposable income. We're proud to partner with Pitts and Spitts for this episode. Please visit www.pittsandspitts.com/tales and use promo code tales for a special spice rub inclusion with your purchase of $500 or more from this trusted Houston pit builder.
55 minutes | Aug 1, 2022
Ep. 182 - Rio Grande Valley Pitmaster Roundtable
One of the fastest growing barbecue scenes in Texas is taking place in the Rio Grande Valley where local pitmasters are showcasing both the popular modern craft style along with menu items and ingredients they grew up with. We had a chance to sit down with many of the great business owners in this area for a special roundtable episode. Check it out! We're proud to partner with Pitts and Spitts for this episode. Please visit www.pittsandspitts.com/tales and use promo code tales for a special spice rub pack inclusion with your purchase of $500 or more from this trusted Houston pit builder. Follow our roundtable participants on Instagram! @teddysbarbecue @smokecraftersbbq @gwssbbq @elsanchobbq @hicobbqcompany @tghostbbq
40 minutes | Jul 18, 2022
Ep. 181 - Kris Manning and Smokey Joe’s BBQ
When Kris Manning took over Smokey Joe’s BBQ from his father Kenneth Manning and Joe Melton, the original owners, he had a delicate balance to strike: balancing the traditions of a restaurant serving the community since 1985 with the desire to improve the overall menu by modernizing the cooking process. Kris along with longtime Smokey Joe’s pitmaster Earl Harris eventually swapped out their trusted but troublesome brick pit for well built custom offset smokers. Armed with newfound cooking knowledge provided by the tutelage of the Guess Family BBQ crew, Kris began making changes to some of the menu. The sides on the menu are a great homage to Kris’ upbringing and the simply seasoned hickory smoked ribs are a Smokey Joe’s staple that will never change, but the brisket they serve today is definitely the more consistent modern style familiar to today's barbecue audience. It’s safe to say Kris has done a great job straddling the line between tradition and evolving with the times. Smokey Joes BBQ 6403 South RL Thornton Freeway Dallas, TX 75232. Business Hours: Sunday -- 11am-5pm Monday -- Closed Tuesday -- Closed Wednesday -- 11am-8pm or til Sold Out Thursday -- 11am-8pm or til Sold Out Friday -- 11am-9pm or til Sold Out Saturday -- 11am-9pm or til Sold Out
44 minutes | Jul 1, 2022
Ep. 180 Pitts And Spitts
In 2015 Ryan Zboril bought the well known Houston based pit builder, Pitts and Spitts, and saw an opportunity to grow the brand of this longtime trusted company. Working alongside his National Sales Director, Coy Christoffel, Ryan and the Pitts and Spitts team have stayed true to the core of the business while smartly expanding its product line to appeal to everyone from backyard novices to competition cookers and seasoned pros. Listen to our interview with Ryan and Coy and check out Pitts and Spitts website to see a full range of their product line. Contact them to order your pit or grill and let them know you heard about it on Tales from the Pits! www.pittsandspitts.com
26 minutes | Jun 20, 2022
Ep. 179 Our Whole Hog Education
As much as we love Texas barbecue, both the traditional and the modern styles, we’ve developed a strong affinity and appreciation for the different whole hog preparations in many of the southern states. A curiosity born from a few Houston area pit masters that had done some whole hog specials over the years, in 2018 we embarked on an ambitious tour through Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia to sample and learn more about wood coal fired whole pig cookery. We returned to Texas with a new perspective on the barbecue served in those different regions. Coincidentally it was not long after this trip that whole hog cooking began gaining traction within Texas and it is fortunately much more readily available these days in the lone star state. That said, nothing compares to experiencing the history of some of the long time establishments. We highly encourage anyone who has an appreciation for BBQ culture or who wants to perhaps cook whole hog to visit as many of these places as possible. We’re excited to share that we’ve planned yet another trip through the south to revisit many of these places as well as try some spots we haven’t previously been to. Labor day weekend 2022 we are headed out for round two of #hogtripping and this time we’re carving out some time to experience Kentucky’s regional BBQ and visit some of our favorite bourbon distilleries! Be sure to follow along on our social media and if you’re interested in being a sponsor for this upcoming trip’s episodes, reach out to us.
51 minutes | Jun 6, 2022
Ep. 178 Derrick Walker of Smoke-A-Holics
Having been involved in competition barbecue and running pop ups for decades, Derrick Walker is not new to the barbecue world. After years of working his way through the kitchen ranks at a hospital and getting a culinary degree, Derrick and his family launched their passion project, Smoke-A-Holics BBQ. After operating a food truck for a year, the Walkers opened their brick and mortar in Fort Worth just a short distance from where Derrick grew up. The community took an immediate liking to the food and the accolades would soon follow, including making the Texas Monthly Top 50 BBQ List in 2021. With a menu that is a welcome combination of barbecue classics that also draws from Derrick’s childhood food memories and utilizes his culinary skills, Smoke-A-Holics BBQ has something on the menu to please all palates with their “Tex-Soul” barbecue. Smoke-A-Holics BBQ Tues: 11a-3p (Turkey Leg Tuesday) Wed-Sat: 11a - sold out Instagram: smokeaholicsbbq
64 minutes | May 23, 2022
Ep.177 Daniel Vaughn BBQ Snob
Five years ago we launched Tales from the Pits to help tell the stories behind the people in barbecue. Daniel Vaughn’s writing and documenting of Texas barbecue has been one of our (and everyone else in the state’s) biggest resources in seeking out new places and visiting the classic joints. We were excited to have Daniel join us on this episode to discuss all things barbecue past, present and future, lists, Texas Monthly, and more. A big thanks to Daniel for sitting down with us and to everyone who’s tuned in over all these years! Thanks to Texas Monthly BBQ Club for sponsoring this episode. Get 50% off your first year subscription to the TMBBQ Club if you sign up during May for national BBQ month: https://txmnth.ly/3FEvrJu
61 minutes | May 9, 2022
Ep. 176 Robert F Moss
We were thrilled to have the chance to sit down with Robert F. Moss during our recent trip to South Carolina for the Charleston Wine + Food Festival. Robert is a wealth of culinary knowledge and the research he's done on barbecue history is second to none. Born and raised in South Carolina, Robert is an accomplished author who has had several books published on Barbecue, spirits, and other facets of culinary history. He's an absolute wealth of information and in this episode we discussed topics ranging from modern barbecue, historical barbecue, and Robert's daunting task of composing Southern Living's 50 Best Barbecue Places in the South list. Tune in to hear some great stories on barbecue history and be sure to pick up Robert's incredible books. Go to his website to sign up for his 'Cue Sheet newsletter. Robert F. Moss Twitter: mossr Instagram: robertfmoss Website: robertfmoss.com Thank you to Charleston Wine + Food for helping to facilitate our recordings during this trip Website: charlestonwineandfood.com Audio support provided by Arvaughnna Audio Website: arvaughnnaaudio.com
36 minutes | Apr 25, 2022
Ep. 175 Old School BBQ Road Trip Roundtable
We joined up with some of our friends in barbecue for a BBQ road trip to some of our favorite old school barbecue joints. For some of us it was a revisit to these classic places and for others it was their first visit. We ended the day in Lockhart where we recorded this episode reflecting on our favorite bites and memorable experiences. We all agreed that while we love modern barbecue, it is great to stop in to the historic places to see where barbecue came from and get a taste of more simple flavors. Thanks to Joe and CJ from Zavala’s Barbecue, Jay Arnold from Barbecue, Bets and Beats, and Terry Osborn for joining us on the trip. Stops along the route: City Meat Market (Giddings) Snow’s BBQ Kolacny Bar-B-Q Spoetzl Brewery City Market (Gonzales) City Market (Luling) Kreuz Market Smitty’s BBQ Thank you to The Texas Monthly BBQ Club for sponsoring this episode. Sign up via the link in our show notes for a 25% off discount on your first year of membership and be on the lookout for new details coming from Texas Monthly on their BBQ festival which will be held in Lockhart this year! Sign up: https://subscription.texasmonthly.com/pubs/TZ/TXP/TXP-bbqclub-discount.jsp?cds_page_id=265055&cds_mag_code=TXP&id=1650774107345&lsid=21132321473027775&vid=1
32 minutes | Apr 11, 2022
Ep. 174 Palmira BBQ
Hector Garate has combined the inspiration of his heritage, his upbringing, and modern techniques to create a menu at Palmira BBQ in Charleston that produces high quality items from top to bottom. Serving high quality meats and flavorful, carefully crafted sides, Palmira has burst onto the barbecue scene and quickly become one to watch. In addition to being open seven days a week, Hector and his partner chef Graham Calabria have also launched Cienfuegos, a pit building business inspired by the direct heat cookers Hector built to cook the heritage breed hogs he serves at Palmira. Check out Hector’s story and be sure to add a stop at Palmira BBQ to your next Charleston trip. Palmira BBQ Instagram: PalmiraBBQ Located inside Port of Call Food Hall 99 S Market St Charleston, SC Special thanks to Charleston Wine + Food, Hed Hi Media, and Arvaughnna Audio for helping to put this episode together. Charleston Wine + Food Instagram: chswineandfood www.charlestonwineandfood.com Arvaughnna Audio Instagram: Arvaughnnaaudio www.Arvaughnnaaudio.com Hed Hi Media Instagram: hed_hi_media
32 minutes | Mar 28, 2022
Ep. 173 Centex Smokers
Michael Johnson of Centex Smokers had welding in his blood, growing up with a father who was a professional welder. Though Michael originally resisted the idea of making it into a career, he quickly fell back on his years of training to embark on a successful career in the pipeline welding industry. Growing up in Luling, barbecue was always a part of Michael’s life but it wasn’t until later that he’d start down the road of pit building. Through a few lucky breaks and word of mouth about the top notch quality of his work, Michael’s pit building business grew rapidly and he now makes pits for some of the best in the industry. Tune in to hear Michael’s story and contact him via Facebook and Instagram to start your custom pit build! Centex Smokers Facebook: CenTexSmokers Instagram: centex_smokers Sign up via our link to get 25% off the Texas Monthly BBQ Club! https://txmnth.ly/36qfadF
43 minutes | Mar 14, 2022
Ep. 172 Charleston Wine + Food 2022
The Charleston Wine + Food festival is an amazing showcase of so many talented chefs and spirits professionals from not just South Carolina but all around the country. We were thrilled to be invited back to cover the event and made the most of our five days in the Lowcountry. Tune in to hear about the whole hog road trips we made in between going to festival events, including one of the best bites of whole hog we’ve ever had. We had an awesome time attending the CHSWF events, supporting local Charleston restaurants, and eating old school South Carolina BBQ. Start planning for your CHSWF experience in 2023! Festival dates for next year are March 1-5! https://charlestonwineandfood.com/
49 minutes | Feb 28, 2022
Ep.171 Cole Parkman
Cole Parkman developed a passion for barbecue at a young age and after trying the conventional college route, ended up chasing his smoked meat dreams. After being hired at Truth BBQ’s Houston location when it opened at 2019, Cole did everything from bussing tables to cutting meat and working pit shifts all the while learning from Leonard Botello, Corey Taylor, Reid Carson and the Truth crew. After building a solid foundation in barbecue Cole was ready for a change of scenery and set his sights on Austin. LeRoy & Lewis BBQ was where he had hoped to work when deciding to move to Austin and he jumped at the opportunity when it arose. Nearly two years later Cole is one of the key members of LeRoy & Lewis where he’s able to learn everything about running a business and expanding his knowledge as a cook and service professional from Sawyer Lewis, Evan LeRoy and their team. Cole and his girlfriend Kasey are working towards their ultimate goal of opening their own place but in the meantime you can catch this dedicated, talented barbecue pro on Pickle Road cooking and serving up some of the best food in Texas. Cole Parkman Instagram: cole_parkman23 LeRoy & Lewis BBQ Open Weds-Sun 11a - 9p 121 Pickle Rd. Austin, Texas Instagram: leroyandlewis SIGN UP FOR THE TEXAS MONTHLY BBQ CLUB via our link: https://txmnth.ly/3HU72jJ
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