Sure you've had backyard barbecues with burgers and dogs, but there's something really special about that very first time you tasted that true southern low and slow smoked barbecue.
I think I was about 11 or 12 years old, sometime in the Winter of 1976 or '77.
We were on a family vacation driving from Ottawa, Ont to Hollywood Beach, Florida. Laying in the back of the station wagon listening to the radio... "Convoy" and "50 Ways To Leave Your Lover" spring to mind.
Along the way i remember passing fields of sugar cane & somewhere we stopped at a place for lunch or dinner. I remember the outside...statues of cowboys & indians, good guys & bad guys. There was boot hill and stage coaches and more. Inside was like a barn. Plain picnic tables, walls covered with old wagon wheels and barbed wire. I even remember that they would give you change in real Confederate dollars.
It was here that I believe I had my first real taste of real Bar-B-Q.
Cleaning out some old boxes, I uncovered an old plastic cow head milk creamer jug. A memento of the past. On the front of it were the words "Old South Bar-B-Q Ranch".
I did some searching " Old South Bar-B-Q Ranch" on the net.
Not much to be found other than a few pictures ...
I even found an old restaurant menu...
It was just as I had remembered it.
I searched, but I couldn't find a website or any contact info. Was it still there ???
I tried calling the phone number that I had found, but it was out of service. So I looked up the city it was located in and contacted thier Chamber Of Commerce, who got me in touch with W.H "Jimmy" McDuffie - the last succesful owner of the Ranch.
Jimmy had sold the place about 15 years ago...and it unfortunately closed down about 10 years ago...place was gutted & turned into a used car sales & parking lot. Not a sign of the Old South Bar-B-Q Ranch remains.