pulled pork, small town living, the small town foodie in me, traveling

The Hickory Pit – Saugatuck

Pulled pork was calling my name and a date night was on the horizon, so why not combine the two?  After a lovely evening stroll around Saugatuck, we headed to The Hickory Pit on Culver Street.  The last time we were in the building it was a small deli and convenience store.  The place was renovated and has a pleasant interior.  The Pit aims for “authentic Southern bbq” and from the menu, we were in for a great Southern treat.

Photo courtesy of “B”

Bar-B-Q Pie almost had me at hello, but I wanted to experience the naked pulled pork to take in the smoke and rub essence.  This fall when I need a belly warmer on a cool day, BBQ Pie will be a must have.  In order to sample many items, we picked 2 Little n’ combo platters (2 meats and 2 sides).  For meat, I chose pulled pork (you knew that, right?) and pulled chicken.  Let’s start with the pork.  I was in love when the plate was placed before me.  There in the middle was a small chunk of sweet, salty bark.  The bark is the perfect chance to get a taste for the spices and to see if the fat is rendered out.  It was perfect.  Normally, I do not go for pulled chicken as it tends to dry out.  The Hickory Pit has made me a pulled chicken fan!  I can honestly report that I devoured more of the chicken than pork.  The hubby went for his favorites, brisket and smoked pork chop.  Smoked pork chops?  Yes and it was smoky, juicy, and was perfect naked (as in no sauce people).  The brisket was equally flavorful and tender.  However there was a large fatty layer that we did not enjoy. Let’s talk portion size.  The two combo platters could easily feed our bbq lovin’ family of 5!  And that is before the sides.  We had enough to enjoy bbq for breakfast and lunch.

Brisket, smoked pork chop, cackle fruit, and cukes with onions

Pulled pork, pulled chicken, baked beans, and creamy slaw

Claiming itself “Southern”, we expected a few southern delights like beans, slaw (creamy or clean), potato salad, and macaroni salad.  A few other Southern staples we were happy to see; corn on the cob, cukes and onions, and cackle fruit (deviled eggs).  My husband was in heaven, two of his childhood favorites on the menu, deviled eggs and cukes with onions.  He was slap happy just ordering the items and giddy enjoying them!  If beans weren’t the magical fruit, I would have ordered a pound to take home for later.  Tangy with a slight kick, yum!  I also enjoyed the creamy slaw.  Just what I would expect down South on a meat and 3 special.  Creamy, a hint of black pepper, and it balanced the pork perfectly.

Sauces.  First let me say, that my chicken and pork needed nothing au naturale.  They were that succulent and flavorful.  As my mouth is drooling just remembering the meal, I realize that I forgot to write the sauces.  What I can say is that mustard sauce is not something we usually pick.  We both took a dab, loved it, and went back for more!

The plates came with a cornbread muffin.  It was completely forgettable and better for feeding the geese in the nearby park.  It was dry, crumbly, and blah.  A cold beer would have kicked the meal up an ultimate level, but in the end, we didn’t miss it.  The food was that good and filling!

I am glad that Saugatuck has a new kid on the block.  We’ll be back.  Often.
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