On Monday, Denny Culbert and Rien Fertel (grandson of Ruth’s Chris founder Ruth Fertel) began their month-long excursion to document the people and institutions that make up North Carolina’s food culture. The project is being done in conjunction with the Southern Foodways Alliance and the University of Mississippi’s Center for the Study of Southern Culture.
“We seek the stories behind the food and the tales from the people who have dedicated their lives to the barbecue craft,” Fertel says in a press release announcing the start of the project. “We’ll talk to Piedmont pitmasters, whole-hog smokers in the East, and hopefully, a pig purveyor or two. There’s no doubt plenty of meat, wood, and smoke will be tasted.”
Culbert and Fertel plan to post their interviews, opinions and photographs daily on the project’s blog and on Twitter. At the end of the trip, the oral history will be added to the SFA’s online Southern BBQ Trail.
|Rien Fertel, left, and Lafayette photographer Denny Culbert today began their month-long excursion aboard "The Barbecue Bus" to document the people and institutions that make up North Carolina’s food culture.|
The two are traveling the entire state of North Carolina aboard the “The Barbecue Bus,” an eco-friendly RV, and plan to hit the state’s major cities like Lexington, Raleigh and Chapel Hill, but also have smaller towns — Ayden, Hookerton, and Jason — on their food trail. Part of their research will be to capture the in-state rivalry between Lexington-style barbecue and the Eastern-style barbecue.
In addition to scouring barbecue eateries, they plan to explore the state’s non-barbecue restaurant scene, farmers markets and microbreweries. The pair is asking Barbecue Bus followers to tweet them with suggested stops along the trail.
Fertel is completing his dissertation on Creole print culture, myth and memory at Tulane University. He teaches in the Tulane history department, researches and writes on culinary cultures, and has completed more than 25 oral histories for the SFA, including the Tennessee Barbecue Trail (2008). Splitting his time between the banks of St. Martinville’s Bayou Teche and New Orleans’ Mississippi River, Fertel calls himself a “Bicoastal Louisianian.”
Culbert, a former newspaper staff photographer who recently transitioned to full-time freelance work, is building a career documenting food culture at home and afield. His first collaboration with Fertel was in early 2011, on the SFA’s Lunch Houses of Acadiana Trail, which took the duo to Brenda’s Place, Creole Lunch House, Josephine’s Creole Lunch House, Laura’s II, Ruby’s Café and T-Coon’s. Culbert is a graduate of the Ohio University School of Visual Communications.
So far the Democratic agenda includes proposals to expand Medicaid; increase the minimum wage; offer equal pay to women; heighten regulations on predatory lending practices, like payday loans; and add more transparency in the governor’s office.
Hot-button education issues ranging from Common Core to charter schools have some lawmakers pushing to scrap the appointing process and go back to electing the state's super.
Downtown Lafayette restaurant launches new concept near Le Triomphe
Police say the handcuffed man fatally shot himself in the back, but his family isn't buying the story.
Yeah, it's smoked venison sausage stuffed in a suckling pig stuffed in a lamb and roasted over an open fire.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Gov. Bobby Jindal offered a budget proposal that suggests new education and health care spending, pay raises for state workers and an incentive fund to encourage colleges to enhance their science, engineering and technology training.
Reamco founders Brent Milam and Ashley Lane now shareholders in acquiring company and part of its management team.
Low heels, high style
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday, March 11, 2014:
The board hopes to recover all fees paid, plus one-half, along with what could amount to hundreds of thousands in additional penalties.
Oh, the irony... or something like that.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Hopefully he’ll be better prepared today than he was in that Feb. 20 deposition.
They came by the hundreds, arriving from all regions of the state to gather on the steps of our Capitol in protest of the Legislature’s long tradition of giving industry the go-ahead to abuse our air, our water and our coastline, all in the name of good economics.
Gov. Bobby Jindal’s recent rhetoric against President Barack Obama has failed to boost his standing among the conservative base.
Louisiana's annual legislative session begins.
The state has hired marksmen to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at two wildlife management areas in south Louisiana.
St. Patty's Day crafts
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.