Senate leader Berger calls for defense of NC barbecue

Eamon Queeney | The North State Journal
A detail look at the finished product of a cook during the Whole Hog Barbecue Championship as part of the International Bluegrass Music Associations Wide Open Bluegrass Festival in downtown Raleigh

RALEIGH — Senate Pro-Tempore Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) took umbrage with the website “Munchies” after it published an article titled “Why Is Brooklyn Barbecue Taking Over the World?” In a release, Berger urged for a bipartisan defense of N.C. barbecue.

Eamon Queeney | North State Journal
Senate leader Phil Berger reacts to a question as at a press conference before the 2017 short session.

“Everyone makes mistakes, and it’s time for the writers at Munchies to admit theirs: ‘Brooklyn barbecue’ — whatever that is — won’t be taking over North Carolina anytime soon,” said Berger. “This is a fact on which we can all agree, and I call on Gov. Cooper and Speaker Moore to join me in mounting a bipartisan defense of our state’s finest food.”

The ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament tips off Tuesday in Brooklyn with four teams from the Old North State participating. The tournament, whose history is rooted in Greensboro, has historically been a time for cross-border challenges involving food and beverage. Last year, when the ACC Tournament was also in Brooklyn, Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim took a swipe at the Gate City, saying, “There’s no value in playing Greensboro, none.”

The great barbecue debate is always heated from Murphy to Manteo, but Berger may be sounding a unifying call since Yankee barbecue versus N.C. barbecue seems like a worthy cause for east-west partisans, both Republicans and Democrats.

Rep. Jimmy Dixon (R-Duplin, Wayne) represents prime hog farming territory and has joined Berger in calling out Munchies on their mistake. “I wish Munchies much success with their pork products,” said Dixon, “but, to appreciate ‘real’ barbecue, one must visit a wood-cooking restaurant in North Carolina.”