Wood that after burning becomes coal.
And with this coal we cook the meat you eat.
Wood and fire.
Wood and fire are living creatures…
Sorry, I haven’t told you who I am. My name is Ron. I was born in Oklahoma City 50 years ago. Around 2001 I came to Wilmington, NC, to work as a dementia specialist.
After that, I got some jobs here and there, and while working at Village Diner, in Hillsborough, a series of random events led me to start working at Hillsborough BBQ Company 2 and a half years ago.
I’m the pit master. That’s my passion. I learned how to cook beef meat back in the day in Oklahoma when I was younger.
When I moved to NC I had to learn how to cook the diverse parts of a pig: ribs, butts, brisket…
I had to learn that the perfect temperature to cook the meat is between 150 and 175 degrees
and that I have to be very careful with the coal because if the temperature goes beyond 200 degrees I could burn the entire house down.
That would ruin at least $2000 in meat and I don’t even want to imagine how much the damages for the house would cost, you know?
That’s why I have to pay attention to the schedule we have written down on the blackboard
and the amount of meat we need to cook every day. I have to be effective, that’s the key.
Man, it can be really hot here! The firebox can make the temperature rise to at least 300 degrees! Or at least that’s what it feels like. And in the summer, especially in May and June, I tell you, it must be 1000 degrees here!
My job is tough but I love it. I have to cut the meat and put it inside the pit and shovel the coal. That’s why I always listen to music. 97.5, baby, that’s what keeps me going everyday!
The rest of my colleagues have their own domains: the front house, the bar, the kitchen. But in my case, everybody at Hillsborough BBQ Company knows that this is my pit; that this is my own kingdom.