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Best Barbecue Restaurants in the World

Allen & Sons

Courtesy of Allen & Son

Allen & Son: Chapel Hill, NC

If proprietor/pit master Keith Allen seems a bit cranky, keep in mind that his workday began at 3 a.m. While you're sleeping, he's splitting hickory logs, firing the pit, roasting 20-pound pork shoulders until they're tender enough to pull apart with your fingers, chopping them to bits with murderous-looking cleavers, and seasoning them with a unique sauce that contains neither ketchup nor molasses, but simply vinegar, salt, and hot pepper flakes. Thus reduced to smoky, savory hash, the meat is piled on a bun with vinegar slaw and, if you ask nicely, a pickle. Pair it with a locally bottled, lurid red cherry soda called Cheerwine.

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