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Three places to go out of your way for.
The BBQ Joint
Sawdust covers the floor at this Eastern Shore spot, but don’t be fooled by the humble surroundings—chef/owner Andrew Evans went from fine-dining kitchens to winning over judges on the national barbecue-competition circuit. When we tear into crunchy-sweet wings, 15-hour brisket, or pulled pork doused in tarheel vinegar sauce, we can see why. 216 E. Dover St., Easton.
At this Friday-through-Sunday stand in the Vanish Farmwoods Brewery compound, which sits on a hops farm, brisket and pulled pork are a draw. But it’s the humble chicken that steals the spotlight. The size of the menu varies—a recent trip saw an abbreviated lineup of sandwiches and porky barbecue nachos, which were so good we ordered seconds. 42245 Black Hops Ln., Leesburg.
Some of the best, most tender and unapologetically fatty brisket we’ve found on the East Coast is at this no-frills smokehouse in Loudoun County. (Look for the stacks of wood and the vintage Coke machine out front.) Baked beans and slabs of dry-rubbed spare ribs—which fall off the bone just enough—are close runners-up. 41153 John Mosby Hwy., Aldie.
This article appeared in the May 2018 issue of Washingtonian.