Sunday, September 25, 2011
I tried out a new western North Carolina vinegar based barbecue sauce made by Yadkin River Smokers this evening.
Yadkin River Smokers were at a barbecue competition with a team and with a booth for pork skins and sauce this weekend. Since I adore pork skins and especially those fried fresh on site, I had to stop by. The pork skins were absolutely amazing, and Robert hooked me up with a bottle of their barbecue sauce.
Robert said that he likes Yadkin River Sauce on chicken, and that it's extra good warmed up and used as a dipping sauce. Barbecue people know their products, so I decided to do my first quick grilled chicken smoke just as he had suggested.
When I opened the bottle, I got the vinegar kick smell, but it was not as strong as many North Carolina barbecue sauce products. There was an extra sweet layer in there. The scent was very nice, so I was curious to see how the sauce would taste grilled on the chicken and also on the side as a dip.
I would call Yadkin River Barbecue Sauce a mop as is the tradition in North Carolina, but it had just a little more body than the NC sauces I've used before. This meant that the sauce stayed on the chicken better than mops which was nice, since I was doing the boneless, skinless chicken breasts which can be on and off in minutes. After a long weekend at a barbecue competition, I really wanted something fast and simple.
I let the chicken rest in the sauce for about a half hour while I got the grill fired up and hot. Preheating a grill really is important. If it's not hot, then grilled foods will stick.
My yard was smelling great, and we were all looking forward to dinner. I was hoping the chicken would taste as good as it smelled.
I pulled the chicken and had some sauce that I heated on the stove. Sometimes I heat sauce on the side of the grill, but the boneless breasts grill really fast, so it seemed a good idea to heat the mop sauce inside and have it ready.
The grilled chicken with Yadkin River Barbecue Sauce was excellent and even better with extra warmed dipping sauce. Robert told me right on that.
Yadkin River BBQ Sauce is a North Carolina sauce - clearly. But, it has an extra layer of sweet to cut the twangy vinegar. I adore our North Carolina vinegar sauces, but they can be a bit much for those outside the area. I think Yadkin River BBQ Sauce will appeal to locals but also to those who are not used to the real high octane vinegar sauces. It's in the spirit of our sauces but with more layers and not so "in your face" on the vinegar.
You can buy Yadkin River Sauce direct, and they hope to be in grocery stores soon. Since Food Lion is based here in North Carolina, I hope they will be carrying Yadkin River Barbecue Sauce. They are good about stocking local products, and this is a thumbs up.