California

BBQ |
September 16, 2015

Maple Block Meat Co.

It’s my job to travel this great country—and parts outside Texas—looking for notable barbecue joints. But searching for good brisket in California can feel like waiting for a cool September day in Texas: both exist, but mainly in theory. After making my way through a solid Southern California itinerary…

BBQ |
August 19, 2015

Interview: Lolis Elie

Author: Smokestack Lightning: Adventures in the Heart of Barbecue Country Age: 52 In the mid-nineties, Lolis Elie and photographer Frank Stewart travelled around the country eating barbecue for the book Smokestack Lightning. There aren’t many books as influential to my writing about…

BBQ |
August 5, 2015

Interview: Kevin Bludso of Bludso’s BBQ

Owner/Pitmaster: Bludso’s BBQ; Opened 2008 Age: 50 Smoker: Steel offset smoker and gas-fired rotisserie smoker Wood: Red oak, pecan, apple, and mesquite charcoal Kevin Bludso’s roots are in Compton, but he earned his barbecue chops in Corsicana, Texas. His great aunt, Willie Mae Fields, ran a semi-legal barbecue business…

BBQ |
June 3, 2015

Santa Maria BBQ Restaurants

Santa Maria style barbecue is probably the least familiar of any barbecue style in the country, especially for those outside California. That’s likely due to how hyper-regional the menu and the fuel are, but also how limited its representation is outside the Santa Maria area. Even three hours in either direction,…

BBQ |
June 2, 2015

California’s Native Barbecue

California is known for a lot of things—sunshine, wine, earthquakes—but its barbecue scene isn’t one of them. Which isn’t to say they don’t have it at all. There are, of course, the smattering of “Texas-style” and “Louisville-style” and all the other ex-patriate homages to various barbecue iterations. But California has…

BBQ |
November 18, 2014

Totally Smoked in the Golden State

Texas seems to export our barbecue styles as far and wide as our natural gas. Earlier this year I noted how often the aesthetic of meat on butcher paper, a decidedly Texas design is imitated on both coasts (and a few places in between). But as anyone who has…

Politics & Policy |
June 12, 2010

Should Texas adopt Proposition 14?

Proposition 14, adopted by California voters on Tuesday of this week, calls for open primaries, similar to a process that was used in Louisiana from 1975 until 2008. In an open primary, all candidates for an office are listed on the ballot, and the top two vote-getters go into a…

The Culture |
May 31, 2010

Where I’m Home

This is our second “Where I’m From” special issue, in which the entire magazine, front to back, is given over to stories about growing up in Texas. Last time, most of the essays were by staff writers. This time we turned to some of our favorite authors, folks like…

Politics & Policy |
March 1, 2008

Bear Market

The historic showdown between Texas and California has been a cold war, a simmering ideological feud between two great powers. And the winner (for now) is . . .