Latest News

‘Those are fighting words,’ governor says after Stephen Colbert bashes NC barbecue

Sam Jones BBQ: a family tradition

Sam Jones, a part of a six-generation BBQ family, opens his own place in Winterville, N.C. He pays homage to his family's restaurant, The Skylight Inn, but brings the old traditions into a more modern setting.
Up Next
Sam Jones, a part of a six-generation BBQ family, opens his own place in Winterville, N.C. He pays homage to his family's restaurant, The Skylight Inn, but brings the old traditions into a more modern setting.

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper fired back at Stephen Colbert in a brewing barbecue battle pitting North Carolina against South Carolina, vinegar and tomato versus mustard.

“Those are fighting words,” the governor said to Colbert, a South Carolina native, over Twitter.

He was responding to Colbert’s comments Tuesday night on The Late Show on CBS. Talking about the boy found in the woods after going missing for two days, the talk show host said, “Little boy found in North Carolina, that is such happy news. But in a tragic twist, he will have to spend his life eating North Carolina barbecue.”

“I welcome your vinegar-stained letters you poor flavor-deprived bastards,” Colbert added.

The North Carolina governor fired back: “Vinegar and tomato have their place -- y’all have a mustard problem.”

South Carolina’s distinctive barbecue sauce is mustard based. According to the South Carolina Barbecue Association, “South Carolina mustard sauce can be clearly traced to those German settlers and is still in abundant evidence today, even after 250 years, in the names of the families who sell mustard based sauces and mustard based barbecue to the public.”

Colbert’s barbecue of choice, and his trash talking about eastern North Carolina’s vinegar-based ‘cue goes back years. He’s called the classic eastern North Carolina style a “deadly toxin” and compared it to “shredded cardboard soaked in vinegar” over the years on national television, according to Texas Monthly.

Charlotte Observer food writer Kathleen Purvis explains what happens every time she writes about BBQ - and tells us the one thing that astonishes her every time she eats a barbecue sandwich.

Related stories from Charlotte Observer

Charles Duncan covers what’s happening right now across North and South Carolina, from breaking news to fun or interesting stories from across the region. He holds degrees from N.C. State University and Duke and lives two blocks from the ocean in Myrtle Beach.
  Comments