The Pit, Raleigh NC

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The Pit

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Seasonal Skillet Cornbread – served with home-made butter

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BBQ Soul Rolls- chopped pork BBQ, cabbage collards and candied carrots served with Oak Island sauce and pepper jelly

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Carolina Classic Combo – pork chopped BBQ and fried chicken, Brunswick Stew, Mac & Cheese, Biscuit, Hush Puppies

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Banana Pudding – Creamy vanilla pudding layered with bananas, wafers, marshmallow fluff and meringue

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Carrot Cake – With candied pecans and molasses cream cheese frosting

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Without a doubt the most upscale – or dare I say ‘commercial’ – barbeque spot investigated during the trip to The Triangle, it was in the peak of lunch hour that we entered The Pit and finding only a few two-tops available we luckily nabbed one, the decision to valet leading to a long wait for the car after the meal but preventing standing around the hostess podium like so many others arriving mere moments after we entered the surprisingly sizable space.

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Unfortunately the sort of place where servers pronounce everything as “good,” “awesome,” or “great choice” with the sort of fervor that makes you wonder if a caffeinated pep-rally is part of the pre-shift routine, suffice it to say that the scene within The Pit is of the energetic variety and with loud music, close seating, plus cold beer bringing voices up at least a few more decibels one only wishes that the owners had put as much thought into providing a comfortable dining environment as they did into the décor.

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Eventually navigating the outsized menu, some very traditional plates alongside odds n’ ends that seemed willing to take chances without entirely ‘jumping the shark,’ it was in two appetizers along with a shared Combo that we invested, our drinks refilled frequently as sat unintentionally eavesdropping on the conversations around us with servers buzzing around the room.

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Waiting just fifteen minutes, the kitchen sending out items at a breakneck pace, it was to a sizeable duo of apps that the meal began and although the signature ‘soul rolls’ proved surprisingly well balanced with meat and sweet juxtaposing bitter greens it was the scorching hot skillet of cornbread that silently stole the show, a sizeable chunk sopping with butter that just as easily could have served as dessert, though considering what would follow it was just as well served right where it was as it would have been a shame to skimp on actual sweets at the end.

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Amused by the definition of “Carolina Classic Combo” as the plate was served with chopped pork, fried chicken, and two Southern sides it was just as the soul rolls were finished that our sizeable shared plate arrived and served with unlimited biscuits, hushpuppies, honey and jam the $10.59 plate is perhaps the best deal in the land, the crispy chicken and supple pork both amongst the best in the area while all but the runny Brunswick stew was also quite delicious, the aforementioned cornbread the only thing holding me back from ordering a third round of biscuits and fried nuggets of bread.

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Unwilling to eschew dessert, or more appropriately barely able to resist ordering all four, it was undoubtedly a shock when two more enormous plates arrived just ten minutes later and priced at just six bucks each one would be hard to decide which was better, the all-natural banana pudding soft and sweet beneath a mountain of ethereal meringue while the dense, moist carrot cake’s spice profile received a significant upgrade from toasty roast nuts and molasses-kissed cream cheese.

http://www.thepit-raleigh.com

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Category(s): Bread Basket, Chapel Hill, Cornbread, Dessert, Durham, Food, North Carolina, Pork, Raleigh, The Pit, Vacation

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