A Visit to the Hickory Pig BBQ
During a recent joy ride to Gainesville recently to test our "new-to-us" car, we came upon the barbecue dive "The Hickory Pig" which was rated #1 by Atlanta Magazine. The owner, Phil Beaubien ,is a laid back former insurance man who seems to enjoy life as it comes. As we read the menu on the wall (why waste money on a fancy menu?), he told us a couple of times we could sample anything. We didn’t ask for any samples. I ordered ribs and Anna ordered a pulled pork sandwich.
After we received our plates and sat down to eat, he and his assistant sat down at the next table and talked to us as if we were in their dining room. The place is a good example of a homemade building. It goes by no architectural rules that I could tell. He told me he started with “these two planks” that he apparently sat up as a counter about 20 years ago. Then he added a room around it, then another room and so on. The walls are covered with little pictures, signs, pigs, kid's drawings and anything they happened to like. An interior decorator would faint in shock, then quickly disassemble everything that makes the room unique.
My ribs were pretty good. The coleslaw was good, and to be truthful, the Brunswick stew and I didn’t get along. By the way, the banana pudding is pretty good too. It was a topic of discussion preceded by the question, "can you handle the truth?" He preceded to tell us the evolution of his recipe which we labeled "semi-homemade". He liked that description and had the menu changed to reflect the term. Guess we left our mark on "The Hickory Pig".