Allen & Son
Review by: Michael Stern
Memorable | One of the Best
**** THIS RESTAURANT IS PERMANENTLY CLOSED ****
The Allen & Son in Chapel Hill is located in what used to be far outskirts of town before town became The Research Triangle. Now it is one of the few individual restaurants in a crowded area; but glory be, it’s hardly changed at all. Same old cinderblock walls, same plastic tablecloth … and the same authoritative North Carolina style Q, meaning velvety pieces of hickory-smoked pork. As is local custom, the sauce is separate from the meat, available in a bottle on the table: thin, butter-rich, vinegar-based hot sauce loaded with spice and cracked pepper. Just a sprinkle is all you will want to make this pork sing. In fact, you may not want any sauce at all. The meat is that good.
We recommend getting Allen’s meat on a plate (rather than a sandwich), which includes a pile of sparkling cole slaw and about a half-dozen crisp-skinned hushpuppies. The hushpups are arranged like a sculptor’s work, on top of the pork. It is a field of spheres atop a heap of meat: a lovely, aromatic, and absolutely mouth-watering sight.
If you get the combination plate known to some locals as “stew and que” (highly recommended), the smoked meat is supplemented by a bowl of Brunswick stew, another traditional companion to smoked pork in these parts. Unlike the meatier Brunswick stews of southern Virginia, this stuff is mostly vegetables with a few shreds of meat, all cosseted in a tomato-rich sauce.
For dessert, choose among peanut butter pie, fruit cobbler, cream cheese pound cake, and chess pie.
Directions & Hours
|Meals Served||Lunch, Dinner|
|Credit Cards Accepted||Yes|