After a full morning at IFBC 2015 in Seattle that began with breakfast, moved on to the keynote, and then concluded with breakout sessions, I could not wait to go out for lunch. With some friends I had met last night, we had decided on Jack’s BBQ. Everyone was very excited, but I have to confess that I’ve never been a huge fan of BBQ, but, determined to have an open mind, I went along for the experience. After all, that’s what Anthony Bourdain would do, right? #neverturndownameal
One of the perks of this lunch adventure was that we were joined by the owner, who was gracious enough to order a picnic platter and several small plates to share. But before the food arrived, he asked — does anyone want to meet the chef and get a tour of the smokers? Everyone immediately stood up, and iPhones and cameras in hand, headed past the bar and to the back of the building. #foodbloggers There, we met Jack who showed us the specific wood he used, and opened the bottom of a smoker to show us the fire, not roaring, but rather a long, slow, burn, that made its way through the smokers to the stacks of meat and oranges. Oranges? Yes. For the smoked orange and sugar Old Fashioned cocktails. I’ll have one of those please.
On my way back inside, I told Jack that this slow cooking process reminded me of the Peruvian pachamanca, where meat is cooked in the ground, buried with hot rocks, potatoes, and covered with leaves. Smiling, he mentioned that indeed he was familiar with cooking foods buried in the earth, and I thanked him for the tour before sitting down to a smoked Old Fashioned cocktail that was waiting for me. The bartender even stopped by to make sure we were enjoying our drinks. #ohyes
I wish I could tell you that I didn’t enjoy lunch. That my dislike for BBQ remained steadfast, but lunch here changed all that. Without question this was the best BBQ meal I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying, anywhere. And the brisket? Insane. Maybe it was the company, maybe it was meeting the chef, or maybe it was the Noon cocktail. But maybe it was just how the meat was cooked. Slow. With care. At the right time. In the right place. Looking at our iPhones and watches, we quickly said our goodbyes and headed back to the conference for the afternoon sessions. But for a brief moment, I looked around, and was tempted to stay, have another drink at the bar, and inhale the aromas of slow cooked meat that filled the room. #playinghooky
As an active food blogger, I was eligible for a discount during conference registration and in exchange I promised to write 3 blog posts on a subject of my choice related to IFBC 2015. This is the second of 3 posts about my weekend adventures at IFBC 2015 in Seattle.