Influences and reflections??

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Randy C.

TVWBB Member
Hi Lolis, thanks for taking time to answer our questions. Let me tell you, I loved your book! It was the first narrative on BBQ that I had read, and since then, I have been trying to find more books that address BBQ in that style.

Now, you mentioned this project had its beginnings after you and Frank had a memorable BBQ meal together. What other BBQ influences/experiences persuaded you to pursue this project?Also, were there any particular ideas about BBQ that you had in the beginning that were changed or blown away by the end of the project?

Thanks again!

Randy C.
 

Lolis Eric Elie

New member
Randy,

I grew up in New Orleans. It is decidedly not barbecue country. Still, I remember some excellent back yard barbecue in my youth. Also, New Orleans is a food town. So for as long as I can remember I was in search of good food.

Which is to say I came to the barbecue book with very little knowledge of barbecue, but a fair knowledge of food and taste. If you read the book carefully (and I sort of hope you don't read it this carefully, you'll see my evolution in its pages. There are things in some of the earlier chapters that I later reconsider. Since the book is not compiled exactly in chronological order though, this will not be obvious.)

The real lesson for me in the book was in realizing the range of styles and approaches in this country. I hadn't known that at first. Also, because I was doing a book, I had to keep tasting long after someone else might have said, "I've tried the North Carolina barbecue twice and it's no good." In that way I was able to find good versions of all the styles and love them.

As for influences, I love A.J. Liebling's book, "Between Meals: An Appetite for Paris." For a non fiction book that's beautifully poetic in the way I hope to be at some points, George Garrett's "Whistling in the Dark."
 
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