The Big Apple ranked eighth overall in “2021’s Best BBQ Cities In America,” a ranking conducted by LawnStarter.
And the city performed even higher in individual categories — it tied for second place in “Most Top-Rated BBQ Restaurants” and “Most BBQ Festivals.”
“What are the key ingredients of the best BBQ city?” the ranking states. “Award-winning barbecue restaurants and chefs, experience hosting a “master-level” competition, multiple barbecue festivals, and high fan ratings, among others.”
Kansas City, Missouri smoked the competition and garnered the top slot, followed by Chicago, Houston, Cincinnati and Memphis.
Curiously, North Carolina — which hosts one of four American barbecue styles along with Kansas City, Memphis and Texas — had a tough showing, according to the ranking. Raleigh only sopped up the 20th spot.
“Why didn’t North Carolina’s signature sauce rank higher?” the ranking states. “Maybe it’s because North Carolina ‘cue culture is spread out in the state rather than concentrated in one area like Kansas City or Memphis. (Texas, too, was a mixed bag in our ranking.)”
The ranking pitted 199 cities against each on other on a variety of metrics, from BBQ joints per 100,000 residents to awards won.
New York City scored 24th in terms of quality, but higher on events and access, according to the rankings.