Moonlite Bar-B-Q Inn
> Location: Owensboro, KY
This down-home restaurant has a barbecue buffet and a separate dinner menu including shrimp and catfish specials. A local favorite, Moonlite is known for its tender meats, and people drive from far and wide for the smoked mutton. Customers also love the burgoo, broccoli casserole, and pecan pie.
> Location: Clarence, LA
Open since 1959, this brick pit barbecue establishment serves a pared-down menu of smoked ribs, beef, pork, and ham with vinegar sauce and sides of baked beans, potato salad, and slaw. Choose a sandwich with a homemade bun or meat by the pound, and grab a ginger cookie for dessert.
> Location: New Orleans, LA
This Bywater hotspot is famous for its burnt ends, which sell out quickly, as well as its pastrami sandwiches and key lime and peanut butter pies. The ribs and brisket are consistently moist with a vinegar sauce -and the cocktails are popular too.
> Location: Clarksdale, MS
Located at the fabled Crossroads in Clarksdale, Abe’s Bar-B-Q is a popular lunch spot for sandwiches and tamales. The barbecued beef and pork (no chicken) come with a tangy vinegar sauce, and the slaw is vinegar-based as well. Customers love the potato salad and the friendly staff.
Clay’s House of Pig (C.H.O.P.)
> Location: Tupelo, MS
This tackle-shop-turned-barbecue-joint became an overnight sensation when it was featured in Forbes and Food and Wine magazines. Along with smoked pork shoulder, chicken, brisket, and ribs by the pound, C.H.O.P. serves sandwiches, tacos, and barbecue-smothered taters, nachos, and fries.
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