'contemplating the nexus between meat and mortality in a post-BBQ frenzy
February 19, 2014 7:20 AM   Subscribe

Man reading that really makes me want to cook a pig; its been a while since my last one.
posted by TedW at 7:47 AM on February 19, 2014

"He has burned his property down more than once. If that isn’t love, what is it?"
Gross incompetence and neglect.
posted by plinth at 7:47 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

Gross incompetence and neglect.

Insurance fraud? Anyway, thanks for introducing me to Roads and Kingdoms and Nathan Thornburgh. Great article with very enjoyable writing.
posted by Cookiebastard at 7:52 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

I had Rodney Scott's pig a few weeks ago at an event Sean Brock put on in Nashville to raise money to rebuild Scott's burned-down pit (so maybe he didn't have insurance?). It was great, very distinct from how it's done around here. He also had some awesome pork cracklings, I wish I had stolen more to take home.

Also, Sean Brock is one of the nicest and most enthusiastic people you'll ever meet.
posted by ghharr at 8:19 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

Man, the food looks great but I feel like this kind of sums up the whole enterprise:
In Charleston, where we have gathered on a former slave plantation to try to talk deeply about foodways and culture and history, there are no African-Americans or Africans in the core of the group. Rodney Scott was cooking at the BBQ, but he and the cooks at Tuesday’s Gullah night were just role players. Alessandro’s method of dealing with this is not to be defensive or minimize what damage that exclusion might do to the central conceit of the week. Rather, he wants to maximize it, to make it emotional. So, following an afternoon side trip he took to one of the original organic-certified African-American farms in the area, he appears before us at a near-quaver and begins to speak.

Why this is happening? We are all here, we are sharing beautiful moments, we are talking about raw materials. And it doesn’t feel right in a way, those beautiful black people, they came here, to be enslaved. They brought their ingredients, they brought their culture, which this Lowcountry cuisine has been built upon. And I don’t see them here. So I am sad in a way, and I just want to share this sadness with you tonight. Because they are so beautiful.
posted by fight or flight at 8:22 AM on February 19, 2014 [2 favorites]

There's also this neat article about Rodney Scott's place that makes me want to ditch this drizzly London afternoon and go eat my body weight in delicious smoked meat.
posted by fight or flight at 8:27 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

The Cook it Raw guys can be a bit odious - its very "San Pellegrino-y" - sort of dining as fashion and being invited to Cook It Raw makes you one of the cool kids.

There was a great quote from one of the New Nordic guys ( co-owner of Noma) who opened a place in La Paz and is part of crew behind cook it raw -

Gustu is helping Bolivia re-discover its indigenous cuisine at the high-end — so many restaurants in La Paz are French or Italian, because Bolivians don't see their own cuisine as fancy. Gustu is also about extricating Bolvian food from the shackles of authenticity and the burden of being cheap, through modern techniques and a wine-paired tasting menu that runs about $135.
posted by JPD at 8:46 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

And by great I meant awful BTW
posted by JPD at 8:51 AM on February 19, 2014

No Reservations does Cook it Raw in Japan

Sean Brock on the awesomeness of Cook it Raw

I actually really want to go eat at his restaurant, it's not far from me now and it sounds amazing
posted by ninjew at 8:52 AM on February 19, 2014

Oh god, Scott's is....I dunno. Almost ethereal? Lightening? Elevating? All of which are not words you usually associated with a mound of chopped meat and fat, but there's a certain transcendence to his 'cue. I had the good fortune to have some before the pit area burned down. Fingers crossed that Mr. Scott can get it back up and running soon.
posted by Maecenas at 8:56 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

The nexus between meat and morality equals a bluetooth crash. Every time.
posted by srboisvert at 9:30 AM on February 19, 2014

Both this part + Flight or Flight's quote made me feel kind of disillusioned about the whole thing:
It’s a bit puerile, in that way that this chef culture can be these days. That’s one of the reasons why Shewry is harvesting rice: He grew up farming in New Zealand, he tells me that morning, and his father wouldn’t think it right to come and shoot a living creature just for the experience of it. I have a similar reaction when it comes to the goat that was killed for the afternoon cookout. I don’t know much about cuisine, but I do know about raising goats, and my uncle would not have kept a meat-goat, as this one was, in a large dog crate for a few miserable hours before being led into the woods for messy end (protip: string a goat up and bleed it out, don’t shoot it like it’s a Russian mobster you’re chasing through the Pine Barrens).
I know people who attended the public event and they said it was very poorly planned.

Not surprisingly to see Shewry's position. If you have a chance to read Fool Magazine, which is unfortunately not online, the story about him is great. He values work-life balance and his family in a way that would be alien to most other star chefs.

Re: the quote Flight or Flight highlighted, it's too bad they didn't include Michael W. Twitty who specializes in African-American cooking history and is one of the few people I'd say is qualified to do plantation events in a respectful way.
posted by melissam at 10:48 AM on February 19, 2014

the sort of speed-dating with traditional lifestyle that is Cook it Raw’s hallmark. There’s a full day of fishing and hunting and cooking at Turnbridge’s hunting lodge. Not that it’s without some problems. I and a few chefs keep losing crab nets in the current. There’s a minor Instagram controversy when one of the chefs stages a deer’s head with a knit cap. The swollen gator tongue is passed around and swung like a phallus from a chef’s pelvis. It’s a bit puerile, in that way that this chef culture can be these days.

posted by Chrischris at 11:26 AM on February 19, 2014

Fool is like the best food magazine going right now - even if they are part of this clique
posted by JPD at 1:04 PM on February 19, 2014

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