Once I knew two guys from Goldsboro and Kinston respectively who would argue mightily about where to get the best barbecue down east. Both places are on highway 70 going east towards New Bern.
I decided to try both since I was headed that direction for a weekend of sailing in Oriental, NC. At each place I would get a pulled pork sandwich with coleslaw.
On my way down I stopped at Wilbur's on hwy 70 in Goldsboro. I'd been before years ago but I couldn't remember much about the experience. Many people have told me that their favorite is Wilbur's so I was expecting greatness. It was very good but I felt a little let down. The good news is that the pulled pork Wilbur's actually looks like pork and not some chopped up, unidentifiable pig parts. The sandwich was good but it was lacking the distinctiveness of the Eastern NC vinegar sauce. Maybe the kid doing takeout forgot to put it on. I don't know. The sandwich was porky rather than bbq-y. I was let down.
The slaw was ok. It seemed overly sweet without the sharpness of the bbq sauce to balance it. Next time I'll eat in the restaurant instead of getting takeout.
On my way home from Oriental, I stopped at King's in Kinston. I was very tempted to order something called pig and puppy which is basically a giant hush puppy (YUM!) covered w/ pulled pork and topped w/ slaw. As much as I want to harden my arteries w/ hush puppies, I decided to get the sandwich in order to do a fair comparison with Wilbur's. It was perfection! The spiciness of the sauce was balanced by the sweetness of the slaw. The pork was mild and tender. If you are ever headed down east on hwy 70, stop at King's for a pig and puppy and let me know what it was like!