Brunswick Stew

Thick and hearty or soupy and steamy—but always laden with smoky chunks of meat—a bowl of Brunswick stew is the perfect match for a brisk fall day. Get your fix at these five local barbecue joints
PETER TAYLOR

Soup’s On
The consistency of the Brunswick stew ($4 cup, $8 bowl) is on the thinner side at uptown favorite Queen City Q—but it’s satisfying, loaded with black-eyed peas, carrots, celery,
butter beans, corn, and big chunks of potatoes. (And plenty of chicken and pulled pork.) Paired with a few shakes of hot sauce and a grilled pimento cheese on Texas toast ($3), it’s definitely a meal. 225 E. Sixth St., 704-334-8437

Grab A Fork
The stew ($4.75 small, $8 large) at Bill Spoon’s Barbecue is so substantial that it doesn’t necessarily require a bowl—or even a spoon. (A fork would work just as well.) Thick and hearty with corn and butter beans, this creamy, heavy stew holds up well to a dunk of the eatery’s tangy, bullet-shaped hush puppies. 5524 South Blvd., 704-525-8865

Where There’s Smoke
City Smoke’s Brunswick stew ($2,75 cup, $6 bowl) is a soup-meets-stew version of the Southern staple, packed with rotisserie chicken and City Smoke ’cue—and holds up well against a side of the restaurant’s jalapeño cheddar cornbread. 100 N. Tryon St., 704-376-2295

Smoky Goodness
At Old Hickory House, you can look straight into the barbecue pit from the dining room and watch the pitmaster work his magic on the smoky ’cue that makes this Brunswick stew ($2.39 cup, $3.99 bowl) so hearty. Thick and meaty, with a true stew consistency, this version is studded with corn—no beans, celery, carrots, or potatoes. Take the restaurant’s chewy hush puppies for a plunge or soak it up with buttery Texas toast. 6538 N Tryon St., 704-596-8014

Mac Attack
Served with a side of Texas toast, the Brunswick stew ($4 cup, $6 bowl) at Mac’s Speed Shop is packed with carrots, celery, butter beans, and corn—and plenty of the biker-bar-meets-barbecue-joint’s signature pulled pork. 2511 South Blvd., 704-522-6227; 19601 Liverpool Pkwy., Cornelius, 704-892-3554; 2414 Sandy Porter Rd., 704-504-8500

Categories: Dish