by Elliot Acosta
In N.C., the preference between eastern or western barbeque has sparked as many arguments as our college sports rivalries. The only thing every North Carolinian agrees on is that barbeque means nothing other than pork, and The Pit has been cooking whole hogs so well that the Travel Channel, Zagat, and the Food Network have taken notice.
The Pit has been specializing in swine since 2007, with the legendary pitmaster Ed Mitchell overseeing the pig cooker. Mitchell has since passed The Pit's legacy to the capable hands of Executive Chef Darrell Brown, who is continuing the eatery's reputation as a must-visit restaurant in Raleigh. Located in the middle of downtown Raleigh's warehouse district, The Pit defies the picnic table and butcher paper stereotype of a typical barbecue joint with hip, exposed brick interior and stylish decor.
The menu features tender Carolina ribs and juicy chopped barbecue served alongside a tangy eastern Carolina vinegar-based barbecue sauce. For those who happen to not be in the mood for pork, The Pit offers other southern favorites such as meatloaf and fried chicken. Showcasing some of the finest of traditional N.C. trademarks, The Pit's side dishes receive as much attention as their barbecue. Comfort food items like sweet potato fries, cornbread with maple butter, and fried okra pay homage to The Pit's N.C. roots while the restaurant continues to blaze its own culinary path.
328 W. Davie St., Raleigh; 919.890.4500; www.thepit-raleigh.com.