It should surprise no one that, committed as I am to the consumption of smoked animal fat, I found little time to actually write about the tour while I was on it. Those intersticial periods between barbecues were spent either in productive slumber, or recumbent on an air-conditioned easy chair in my Hill Country headquarters. But having now returned, I feel the need to get the first of these four essays done. Today's post is hymn to the greatness of Kreuz Market; tomorrow a summary of the also-rans; then, an open-pit barbecue done collaboratively by myself, meat-master Zak Palaccio, and Robbie Richter, New York City's most decorated competition barbecuer; and lastly, I'll do my best to answer the questions with which I began this adventure (not that anybody cares.)
There is a special poignant paradox about starting at the top. Orson Welles spent a lifetime constructing the postscript to Citizen Kane; David knocked out Goliath with a single shot, and the next thing he knew, he was setting up Uriah the Hittite. My trip followed a similar path. The very first stop on our tour was Kreuz Market, the Bayreuth of Beef. Kreuz's isn't much to look at; it's a new building, unpleasing to the eye, offering no hint of the magic within. A story comes with it.