Picnic Restaurant in Durham | NC Weekend | UNC-TV

Picnic Restaurant in Durham | NC Weekend | UNC-TV


>>Deborah: THIS MONTH MARKS THE
ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF A PIEDMONT BARBECUE RESTAURANT
DEVOTED LARGELY TO THE NORTH CAROLINA HERITAGE OF SMOKED
WHOLE HOG BARBECUE. PICNIC EVOLVED FROM A CATERING
BUSINESS SPECIALIZING IN PIG PICKINGS USING PASTURE-FED HOGS
INTO A POPULAR BARBECUE AND CHICKEN HOT SPOT IN DURHAM. BOB GARNER HAS MORE IN
TONIGHT’S “HOUSE SPECIAL.”>>Bob: PICNIC IS A DURHAM
ROADSIDE BARBECUE RESTAURANT THAT’S A COLLABORATION BETWEEN
WHOLE HOG BARBECUE CATERER WYATT DICKSON, BEN ADAMS, FORMER CHEF
AT DURHAM’S PIEDMONT, AND FARMER RYAN BUTLER OF GREEN BUTTON FARM
IN NEARBY BAHAMA, WHO SUPPLIES PASTURE-RAISED PIGS TO THE
RESTAURANT.>>I DO FEEL LIKE THE SORT OF
COMING TOGETHER, THE COMMUNITY ASPECT OF IT, THE EATING
TOGETHER AND PICKING APART AN ANIMAL, LIKE PAYING HOMAGE TO IT
IN A WAY, IS — IS A BIG PART OF WHAT MAKES, LIKE, NORTH
CAROLINA BARBECUE AWESOME. WE’RE IN DANGER OF LOSING THAT.>>Bob: SO TELL ME ABOUT THIS
PHILOSOPHY THAT — THAT YOU AND WYATT HAVE SHARED FOR A LONG
TIME IN THIS KIND OF DREAM THAT HAS SHAPED UP FOR YOU.>>THE FOUNDATION FOR BOTH OF US
IS TRYING TO, YOU KNOW, SOURCE FOOD AS SUSTAINABLY AND
RESPONSIBLY AS POSSIBLE, THEN JUST MAKE IT AS
DELICIOUS AS POSSIBLE. SO, YOU KNOW, FOR WYATT, THAT
STEMS FROM, YOU KNOW, ALL OF OUR PIGS COMING FROM GREEN
BUTTON FARM, FROM OUR THIRD PARTNER, RYAN. SO I THINK WITH KIND OF THE —
WITH BARBECUE BEING THE ANCHOR HERE, IT’S BEEN COOL TO KIND OF
DEVELOP, UH, KIND OF SOME — SOME FARMING SOURCES FROM
EASTERN NORTH CAROLINA WITH, YOU KNOW, KIND OF ALL OUR SWEET
POTATOES COMING FROM BLUE SKY FARMS, THE COLLARDS ALL COMING
FROM THERE. SO KIND OF THESE, YOU KNOW, I
THINK, TRADITIONAL BARBECUE STAPLES THAT NORTH CAROLINA
GROWS A TON OF.>>OUR PIGS ARE — HAVE A DIET
OF FORAGES, SEASONAL FORAGES. IN THE SPRING, THAT WILL BE
KALE, RAPE, TURNIPS. AND THEN WE ADD IN LOCALLY
SOURCED GRAIN. THAT WILL BE BEANS AND FLAX
SEED, CORN. AND THEN WE ALSO THROW IN
SURPLUS PRODUCE THAT WE FIND AT DIFFERENT MARKETS AT DIFFERENT
POINTS. TODAY THEY’RE EATING APPLES.>>Bob: YES, THEY HAD A
LITTLE FRUIT BASKET.>>YEAH, THEY HAVE APPLES, AND
WE DO BUTTERNUTS IN THE FALL, PUMPKINS IN THE FALL.>>Bob: THESE PIGS ALSO GET TO
ROTATE THROUGH A PERIOD OF WOODS FORAGING FOR ACORNS, WHICH
REALLY ADDS TO THE FLAVOR. THIS IS AT THE HEART OF THE
WHOLE ENTERPRISE. MOIST, SUCCULENT, SMOKED, WHOLE
HOG BARBECUE. SAUCE ALREADY ON THERE. SOME WHITE SLAW. AND, OH, MAN. OH. SEE, THAT JUST HAS THE MOST
WONDERFUL BITE. THE MINUTE MY TEETH WENT INTO
THAT, IT JUST YIELDED. THE JUICES ARE THERE. THE SMOKE FLAVOR’S ALL THROUGH
IT. THAT IS JUST SUPERIOR SMOKED
BARBECUE. YOU KNOW, EVEN THE MOST DEVOTED
NORTH CAROLINA LOYALISTS WHO ARE RUNNING RESTAURANTS ARE
REALIZING THAT YOU PRETTY MUCH HAVE TO HAVE OTHER REGIONAL
STYLES OF BARBECUE LIKE THIS SMOKED BEEF BRISKET AND RIBS
BECAUSE THEIR PATRONS HAVE GROWN UP ALL OVER THE USA AND MAYBE
EVEN ALL OVER THE WORLD, AND THEY HAVE THEIR OWN SET OF
BARBECUE EXPECTATIONS. AND YOU CAN’T CONVERT THEM TO
YOUR BELOVED NORTH CAROLINA BARBECUE IF YOU DON’T GET THEM
IN THE DOOR. MAYBE THAT’S ONE WAY TO DO IT. MMM. AND A MIGHTY TASTY WAY TO GET
THEM IN, TOO. YEAH, AND THEN YOU CAN KIND OF
LURE THEM IN AND DO SOME MISSIONARY WORK WHILE THEY’RE
HERE.>>YEAH, I THINK SO. AND I THINK, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE
KIND OF THE NATIVE AND NONNATIVE BARBECUE SECTIONS ON THE MENU. SO IT’S, YOU KNOW, MAYBE SOMEONE
COMES IN FOR THE BRISKET, BUT, ALL RIGHT, WE WANT YOU TO TRY
THIS WHOLE HOG BARBECUE.>>Bob: YOU’RE GOING TO BE
WORKING ON THEM, AREN’T YOU?>>YES, YES, WE WILL.>>Bob: IF YOU COME IN ON SUNDAY
BRUNCH, YOU CAN PLAY AROUND WITH THE POSSIBILITIES EVEN MORE. LOOK AT THIS. THIS IS A NICE SOUTHERN BISCUIT
WITH FRIED CHICKEN THIGH, BUT HERE’S THE TOUCH. YOU KNOW THEY HAD TO HAVE SOME
PORK IN THERE SOMEWHERE. THIS IS PORK SAUSAGE GRAVY OVER
A CHICKEN BISCUIT, JUST KNOWN SIMPLY ON THE MENU AS A BISCUIT
AND PORK GRAVY. WOW. OH, THEY HAVE ALL SORTS OF
THINGS GOING ON THERE. FLAKY, CRISPY, LUSCIOUS. NICE, FIRM SAUSAGE BITS. BEAUTIFUL GOLDEN GRAVY. IN ITS FIRST YEAR, PICNIC HAS
PROVEN TO BE BOTH ADAPTIVE IN TERMS OF MENU CHANGES AND
ADDITIONS AND EXTREMELY CONSISTENT IN THE QUALITY OF THE
BARBECUE AND WELL THOUGHT-OUT DISHES. IN FACT, BEN ADAMS LIKES
TO CALL THE WHOLE PACKAGE THOUGHTFUL BARBECUE. FOR “NORTH CAROLINA WEEKEND,”
I’M BOB GARNER.

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