When European settlers came to the Carolinas, they brought a pair of traditions with them. One was barbecue, the art of slow cooking meat with the smoke of aromatic wood. The other was pigs, which quickly became wild, nuisance animals and the perfect target for hunters looking to feed their families. The two came together more than three centuries ago and the tradition continues today. Unlike the Northern use of the term "barbecue: which means to cook outside, in the South it's all about the animal - the pig - and the smoke - usually hickory and pecan wood. That makes it possible to pick out a roadside barbecue joint by smell alone, which is the case for off-the-beaten-path places like Hog Heaven BBQ. For families with mixed taste buds, be sure to check out some of the BBQ places that also double as country cooking restaurants, such as Prosser's Bar-B-Que and Damon's Oceanfront Grill. If you are picky about your barbecue sauces, be sure to choose the right spot for you. From North Carolina-style (vinegar-based over chopped pork), South Carolina-style (mustard-based over pulled pork) and Texas-style (sweet tomato-based over smoked beef), you'll find the right barbecue to hit the spot along the Grand Strand.
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