Mike and Jeff's BBQ: Greenville, SC225
with Mike Johnston
My second, and last stop before a two to three day break to do a little fly fishing was at Mike and Jeff's Barbecue in Greenville, SC. I really loved the whole look of this place. The smokehouse is attached to the restaurant, but is essentially outside. There are no windows, just screened over openings. And that's way Jeff Little, one of the original founders, likes it. He just believes at his core, that cooking, and for that matter eating outside, is something that makes the food taste better.
Jeff might be the most passionate pitmaster I've met to date. As our conversation went on, his energy level just kept rising...it was clear he loves what he does. To me, everything about his persona and his pit room set up felt mechanic like...it was a straight up cool visual experience...and his pit was a style I hadn't seen before.
I haven't been doing much quoting, but this one I just have to share.. word-for-word...about what the job of being a pitmaster is....
"This is just as old school as it comes....its not a pretty job, you wear your gloves, you got your heat..."
There was nothing mechanical about his barbecue. The flavors of both the pulled pork and chicken had depth to them...they really didn't need any sauce. I also enjoyed the hush puppies...love when you can see corn kernels after you take a bite....and the creamy, with a hint of mustard, potato salad.
If you're serious about becoming a pitmaster some day, you might want to contact him...he be a great guy to have as a pit-mentor! #chasingbbq