Barbecued Pouldoody Bay Oysters

There aren’t a lot of Irish people who eat oysters. Which is a shame, since the island has some great ones. I try to recruit new oyster eaters when we have friends over for dinner. Raw oysters on the half shell are a tough sell, but hot smoked oysters, painted with…

read more

La Caja China: Mid-Summer Pig Roast in Ireland

For St John’s Eve 2018 I cooked Irish sausages on a charcoal grill. It was a little underwhelming. So I suggested that the school acquire a pig roasting box so we could try something a little more ambitious this year. La Caja China, the makers of the famous Cuban-style pig roasting…

read more

St. John’s Eve: The Ancient Irish Fire & BBQ Festival

Looks like I’ll helping out with the barbecue duties at the St. John’s Bonfire Festival at Burren College of Art.  June 23, Midsummer Night, the shortest night of the year, is celebrated all over Europe. In the pre-Christian era, Midsummer Eve was an Ancient Greek festival called Adonia. It was the…

read more

Local Flavors: Irish Charcoal

A year ago, while eating a pulled pork sandwich at the Eatyard in Dublin, I noticed the name “Irish Artisan Charcoal” on a steel plate attached to a barrel smoker. Since I moved to Western Ireland in January, I have sorely missed my Texas offset smoker. And I eagerly await…

read more

Moving the BBQ Smoker to Ireland

Dear Friends: On December 31, my entire family (including Frances, the Basset Hound) will embark on a one-way flight to Europe. After toasting the “Happy New Year” aloft, we will land in Paris, hop a flight to Dublin, rent a van, and drive to Ballyvaughn on the West Coast of…

read more

Texas Monthly’s Top 50 BBQ Joints in Texas

Every four years, Texas Monthly publishes their list of the Top 50 BBQ Joints in Texas. I don’t envy my friend Daniel Vaughn, the Texas Monthly barbecue editor, in the period following the big reveal. The announcement is inevitably followed by mean-spirited second guessing and accusations of bribery and bias….

read more

Portrait of Irish BBQ as a Young Art

The Pitt Bros Barbecue Test Lab is a repurposed shipping container in the incredibly hip EATYARD, a gathering spot for food trucks and other street food vendors in Dublin. Pitt Bros BBQ restaurants has two brick and mortar locations plus the food stand at EATYARD, making it the largest barbecue chain in…

read more

The Campaign for Real Barbecue

My longtime friend John Shelton Reed talked me into joining his barbecue group, The Campaign for Real Barbecue. The organization started in North Carolina to combat the sinking standards there. Many barbecue joints have abandoned cooking with wood or coals and are now roasting their pork shoulders in gas or electric ovens. They…

read more