By Patricia E. Matson
Sometimes you just want to sink your teeth into a satisfying sandwich. No bones to get in your way, not even a fork between you and your meal – just grab it and bite into flavorful food.
If you’re burning for a barbecue, you probably have a few options nearby. But if you drive a bit, there are a lot of great possibilities around Georgia that are well worth a detour. All of the following have ranked very high in a variety of popular rankings.
From the west coast of the state, Sprayberry’s Barbecue in Newnan has a long history of great food. According to the website, Houston Sprayberry sold so many barbecue sandwiches at his gas station that in 1926 he closed it and opened a restaurant. His family still runs the joint and Southern Living praises their ground pork sandwich with tomato and vinegar sauce.
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In Atlanta, it’s no surprise that the capital is full of excellent smoked sandwich restaurants. Close to the heart of downtown, Fox Bros. Bar-BQ brought a Texan-style barbecue to the table in 2007. If you’re here, you shouldn’t miss the Beef Brisket or “The Big Tex,” but they’ve also shredded pork sandwiches. for purists.
In the Virginia-Highland neighborhood near downtown, you can’t do better than DBA Barbecue. If you’re in the mood to satisfy a deep hunger, grab “The Archie Bunker” – pulled pork with a sweet barbecue sauce, with macaroni and cheese and cheddar cheese in the sandwich, between slices of Texan toast. Other intriguing offerings include the Grilled Cheese and Chilli Sandwich and the Reuben Smoked Pastrami (cured at home for 14 days, depending on the menu).
North of Atlanta, between Smyrna and Sandy Springs, Heirloom Market BBQ offers a unique union of flavors. If they’re not complete, try their Spicy Korean Pork Sandwich – with smoked and marinated meat and kimchi coleslaw – although regular pulled pork, pulled chicken, turkey and turkey sandwiches. Breast are also on the menu for take-out or on the terrace.
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If you swing a little south of town, check out the Fresh Air Barbecue in Jackson. This family-owned business has focused on the best staples since 1929, and their oven-baked pork, with a tangy tomato and vinegar sauce, has won praise from many. Also treat yourself to a Brunswick stew.
If you arrive in Macon, in the heart of Georgia, be sure to dine at Fincher’s Bar-BQ. It’s such a favorite since 1935 that there are four locations in town. Onlyinyourstate.com calls the pulled pork sandwich “nothing short of amazing”.
In Augusta, Sconyers Bar B Que tops most lists. Another family restaurant, in operation since 1956, its fine cuisine and fixins were requested by two presidents. For sandwiches, you can choose from shaved pork, T-Loin pork, minced breast, and sliced turkey.
If you want to eat sandwiches all along the coast, you’re in luck, with plenty of succulent springs to savor.
Start in Savannah with Wiley’s Championship BBQ. The restaurant didn’t open until 2005, but founder Wiley McCrary had been cooking barbecues for decades and won many honors since. Their sandwiches include smoked chicken, pulled pork and beef brisket.
Slightly south, in Richmond Hill, the Smokin Pig comes highly recommended. It’s a small, simple menu, but you don’t have to be fancy when the barbecue is this good. Choose from pulled pork, sliced chicken or sliced beef brisket sandwiches.
Every barbecue sandwich pilgrimage should include the Southern Soul Barbecue on St. Simons Island. ExploreGeorgia.org calls it “one of the best barbecues in the state”. The first item on his menu is the Soul Sandwich, giant pulled pork on a toast bun, and you can’t go wrong, but a lot of people are raving about the Burnt Ends sandwich as well, although it isn’t. always available.
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Finally in Brunswick, at the southern end of the Georgian coast, stop at Gary Lee Market. Yes, it’s also a butcher and a grocery store, but the barbecue restaurant is the real draw. Southern Living says the thick ground pork sandwich with its red sauce “is a classic example of Georgian style.”