The Best Cities To Visit For BBQ

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There are very few foods that are as satisfying as barbecue. When a piece of meat spends hours inside of a smoker, something very magical happens. Barbecue pit-masters like to brine meats like chicken, beef, and pork for extra flavors, and as one of America’s most hotly debated food topics, different cities have come up with their own unique cooking styles, meats, and sauces to achieve delicious, fall-off-the-bone barbecue.

Honolulu, HI

Honolulu is known for being the capital and principal port of Hawaii. This modern city extends roughly 10 miles along the southeastern shore of Oahu island, and to get the best BBQ, you may have to travel a little bit outside of the city limits. Honolulu and its surrounding towns have a barbecue culture like none other.

Gina’s Bar-B-Q

Established in 1991, Gina’s Bar-B-Q is a favorite among Honolulu locals and visitors. This restaurant offers generous portions of incredible food, including BBQ beef, BBQ chicken, shrimp tempura, and much more.

Aloha BBQ Grill

Aloha BBQ Grill is dedicated to bringing fresh, tasty, and delicious local food to you in the form of breakfast, lunch, and barbecue. Whether you’re in the mood for a mixed plate of BBQ short ribs, BBQ chicken and teriyaki steak, or you’d prefer the seafood and BBQ combo, you’re sure to find something you’ll love at this Honolulu restaurant.

South Carolina BBQ

The downtown of Greenville, SC, is one of the Upstate’s most popular dining destinations, offering outdoor plazas, street dining, sidewalks (?), stores. It is known for its exceptional beauty. If you plan on traveling to Greenville this summer, you’ll be pleased to know that there are more than 200 barbecue restaurants and dozens of pit-masters from which to choose.

You may be surprised to learn that South Carolina is home to four unique barbecue sauces including mustard, vinegar and pepper, light tomato, and heavy tomato. Depending on the BBQ pit-master, these sauces may be added to the meat during the cooking process or simply served on the side. Many people believe that the mustard-style barbecue is South Carolina’s unofficial sauce because it is one of the only places you’ll find it. This sauce tends to be most popular in the middle of the state, where early German families settled in the 1700s, bringing their love of mustard.

The vinegar and pepper sauce tends to be very popular along the coast of South Carolina, and it’s the perfect BBQ sauce for those who like a little bit of heat. The acidity of the vinegar can work magic with pork, but you can also enjoy it on chicken and ribs as well.

A light tomato sauce basically consists of vinegar and pepper sauce with ketchup (for a touch of sweetness). Most common in the Pee Dee Region, or the northeast corner of the state, you can find this BBQ style in most South Carolina barbecue restaurants. The heavy tomato-based barbecue sauce can be found in the western and northwestern corners of South Carolina. Sometimes called tomato and sugar sauce, you’ll find this kind of sauce on grocery store shelves throughout the United States.

Sweatman’s BBQ

Located in Holly Hill, South Carolina, Sweatman’s BBQ was founded in 1959 by Mr. and Mrs. Harold Sweatman. Their barbecue continues to be cooked fresh every week, and they utilize pecan and hickory trees for the cooking process. They cook whole hogs over hot coals for 12 to 14 hours, adding a secret mustard base sauce to all of their BBQ.

Melvin’s Barbecue

Famous for their St. Louis-style pork ribs, chicken and “Boston Butts” BBQ, Melvins Barbecue is the premier barbecue restaurant in Mount Pleasant, SC. From chopped pork and smoked turkey to Texas-style brisket, you’re sure to find food that the entire family will love.

Nashville, TN

In various parts of Tennessee, chopped whole hog and pork shoulder with a vinegar-based sauce are a popular barbecue tradition. Known for its “dry” and “wet” pork ribs, Nashville is the perfect city to try some of your BBQ favorites.

Jack’s Bar-B-Que

Also known as the godfather of BBQ in Nashville, Jack’s Bar-B-Que opened in 1976 by Jack Cawthon. As one of the first truly successful restaurants on lower Broadway, people from all over Tennessee frequent this barbecue sanctuary for their amazing Texas brisket, smoked Boston turkey, and St. Louis ribs. You can also enjoy smoked Texas sausage, baked beans, and potato salad at this one-of-a-kind restaurant.

Hog Heaven BBQ

Situated right next to Centennial Park, Hog Heaven BBQ offers premier barbecue in the heart of Nashville, Tennessee. Most famous for their “Kickin’ Chicken” white barbecue sauce, this unique eatery has been around for more than 25 years. They offer pulled pork sandwiches, pulled beef brisket, pulled turkey breast, and an array of homemade desserts.

Loveless Cafe

A trip to Nashville would be incomplete without lunch or dinner at the Loveless Cafe. Their story begins in 1951 when Lon and Annie Loveless opened their doors to serve fried chicken and biscuits to hungry travelers on Highway 100. Their homemade southern dishes became so popular that they eventually converted their home into a restaurant and they built a 14-room motel for overnight guests. Today, people from all over the state stop by the Loveless Cafe for some of Nashville’s best hot chicken, short rib po’ boys, BBQ flank steak salad, and blackberry BBQ ribs. Also, be sure to try out the watermelon ribs—you’ll likely never find this treat anywhere else!

ParkDIA: Convenient & Affordable DIA Parking

If you’re flying out of Denver this summer to try some of the world’s best barbecue, why not save some of that BBQ money by parking your car with ParkDIA? We offer uncovered, covered, and valet parking spaces at our safe and secure parking lot, and there’s always a space for you when you need it. Download our mobile app online to reserve your DIA parking space today! If you have any questions regarding our airport parking services, visit our FAQ page online.