ZAGAT Profiles 12 Pitmasters from Across the U.S., including Pat Martin

Pat Martin

Pat Martin

It's always nice to be included in a roundup of some talented Pitmasters. We were thrilled that Zagat stopped by to learn more about the gospel of whole hog bar-b-que we're preaching here at Martin's.

We take our work very seriously here, so it's good to see people are enjoying it and getting the good word out.

Martin is on a mission: He’s trying to save West Tennessee whole-hog barbecue from extinction. Before moving to Nashville, Martin learned the science of West Tennessee whole hog in the tiny town of Henderson, Tennessee. When Martin first discovered the style, there were 12 traditional barbecue joints in the town. Now there are two, he says. At his namesake restaurant, Martin smokes 190–200-pound hogs over wood for about 24 hours in open pits centered in the middle of the restaurants. His succulent pork is basted with a sweet vinegar and tomato mop, pulled and served in a variety of forms. The most iconic is the Redneck Taco, choice of meat served atop a cornbread hoecake with slaw and sauce, an homage to Nashville’s barbecue/hoecake tradition. With six Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint locations spread throughout Tennessee, West Virginia and Kentucky, it seems Martin is succeeding in his mission of spreading the whole-hog gospel. The restaurants have been featured on Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and the Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, and in Bon Appetit, Esquire, Conde Nast Traveler and Men’s Journal.
— ZAGAT
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