When it comes to barbecue, Little Washington has a variety of top tier Eastern Carolina style options. Eastern North Carolina is famous for its’ style of BBQ, defined by juicy and flavorful chopped pork. Locals all have a preference but come visit and decide for yourself! This week at our office, the Washington Tourism Development Authority, we got to try some of the local barbecue, and I must say, it was a DELICIOUS week. Here are a few of the places offering BBQ that we had the chance to try:
Boss Hog’s BBQ is located ten minutes from the waterfront on Carolina Avenue. It was the reader’s choice for best barbecue in Washington according to a contest held by The Washington Daily News in 2019. Boss Hog’s is a no-frills style outpost featuring southern-style smoked meats in an unpretentious setting. We would say that their BBQ is vinegar soaked with a hickory smoke flavor. The meat is dark and thick. Boss Hog’s is a genuine example of Eastern NC style barbecue.
Hog Heaven, a runner-up in the Washington Daily News contest, was another lunch spot for us this past week. Hog Heaven is located on the way into Washington via 264-E, so if you’re coming anywhere from Greenville to Raleigh, this could be your first stop! Crunched on time? They have a drive-through available. If you like spicy, this is the place for you. Hog Heaven’s BBQ is salty and hot. You can literally see the peppers textured across the light-colored meat. Their family barbecue sauce recipe has been passed down for four generations. Friends of the family had always begged them to open a restaurant, and in 1992 they finally did it.
Known for its’ casual atmosphere and southern soul, King Chicken has been a Washington staple since 1958. You may have thought about their cheese biscuits as soon as I said, “King Chicken,” but let me tell you that it is time to consider their barbecue. They were another runner-up in the Washington Daily News contest, and they will not leave you disappointed. Their meat is light, juicy, and sweet. Perfect for a quick snack.
The Dairy Palace is a roadside restaurant with an outdoor walk-up window. Make sure you bring cash with you to this Washington drive-in icon. There are no tables or seating, but it is just a few minutes’ walk from the waterfront so you may take your BBQ sandwich and go find a swing on the boardwalk. We heard that their BBQ sandwich was fantastic through a tip from Jackie Woolard, a Washington insider who works at the North Carolina Estuarium. Their sandwich was generous on the hot sauce and the bun was very soft.
We know that these are only a few of Washington’s local BBQ offerings. Please tell us with where we need to go next!