For the love of barbecue

Published 3:46 pm Wednesday, February 18, 2009

By By MaryClaire Foster
After writing about the Swifts’ barbecue awards for Sunday’s paper, I was left with a huge craving for barbecue, in particular, ribs.
I’m sure many of you, whether it was shared with a significant other or just a friend or two, enjoyed a good Valentine’s Day meal this past weekend. I did as well, but instead of the typical Italian or steak, I opted to indulge my craving.
Having traveled to Tuscaloosa Saturday night, I was able to chow down on the original Dreamland ribs.
Even though I had my fill of ribs, white bread and sauce Saturday night, I still had not had enough for the weekend and visited another barbecue restaurant, Archibald and Woodrow’s, Sunday.
I’ve always wanted to go on a food tour where I would visit some region and sample all the kinds of food offered there. After eating barbecue twice this weekend and having completely different taste experiences at each it got me thinking about a barbecue tour of the state.
Then, later Sunday night, I came across an article on the Tuscaloosa News Web site about a group of college guys from Birmingham-Southern College who had been doing just that, but instead of the state they opted for the South, hitting Alabama, Tennessee, North and South Carolina and Georgia, all in 17 days.
The guys, believe it or not, did this all for an interim class at their school. Not only did the school give them gas money, but they got a full course credit for it as well.
They did have to write a term paper at the trip’s conclusion, but still, eating your way to an “A”? Sign me up.
They did hit some snags along the way, like food poisoning for one and a decent weight gain for another, but overall seemed to have eaten a lot of good food and had a good time.
So, seeing as I’ve only had barbecue from one place in Atmore, (Gold’s and it’s quite good) I have decided to follow these guys’ lead and have my own barbecue quest in our little portion of the state. I’ll start with Atmore and go within an hour’s drive radius, so if you have a favorite place please feel free to share it with me.
And just a thought, if we’ve got the 11th ranked barbecuers in the nation in our town, don’t you think we should send some friendly encouragement their way to start their own restaurant?
To read more about their journey, visit their blog at or their Web site at
MaryClaire Foster is news editor for the Atmore Advance. She can be reached at (251) 368-2123 or via email at

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