In North Carolina, barbecue varies by region. The eastern portion of the state uses a vinegar-based sauce, for instance, while the center favors the Lexington-style, and western parts of the state fancy a heavier ketchup-based sauce. Fortunately, the best barbecue in Charlotte offers all of these varieties and more. - Jeff Hawkins
2511 South Blvd.
Charlotte, N.C. 28203
A growing Dilworth institution, Mac’s is consistently recommended to anyone looking for the best barbecue in Charlotte. Some past customers contend the side dishes alone can make for a good meal. Known to attract big bikes and big appetites, the “Cowboy” Bone-in Ribeye, Kansas City Style Beef Rib and Texas Beef Brisket are just a few of the “Platters to fill you up!” Hours: Monday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.
4400 Sunset Rd.
Charlotte, N.C. 28216
Bubba’s barbecue has a formula for making top-quality Eastern-style barbecue. Some could say it starts with the sauce, but it really evolves over a 33-hour process, cooking the whole hog until the fat is vanquished, leaving nearly 100-percent lean meat to make up its “Hungry Plates.” The “Ultimate Packman” features over a pound of a slow-smoked spare ribs. Hours: Monday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Bill Spoon’s Barbecue
5524 South Blvd.
Charlotte, N.C. 28217
Since it opened in 1963, Bill Spoon’s has developed into one of the top lunch destinations in the region. Near the Tyvola transit station, commuters often stop in for quality Eastern-style barbecue. Hours: Monday through Saturday, 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.