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Bar B Quest

Hot off the grill
Hot off the grill
Photo by Gregory Son

Bar B Quest is literally the search for that good old American thing we like to call
Barbeque. It is not only spelled many different ways, but it has variable roots. Sometimes, it is spelled “ Bar-B-Que”, or “Que” for short. Sometimes it is called “Barbieque”, as in, “put another steak on the “Barbie”. It can come from any state in the nation, and from Europe, Asia, and England and from beyond. It could be sweet style, like from the Carolinas, or Dry-Rub Texas style that’s made to be larger than from anywhere else.

There is Thai style barbecued chicken, with a red chile/vinegar dipping sauce. One might find smoky, barbecued, Chinese pork ribs (served with Plum Sauce, Catsup, and Hot Mustard) or skewered meats like beef, pork, or chicken Sate (with Peanut Sauce, Dutch Indonesian style), or meat such as beef or even lamb (marinated in Middle Eastern spices and served as Kabobs). There might be some fish, placed whole on the grill with some olive oil, lemon and sprigs of fresh herbs inside (reminiscent of summer in the Italian Riviera). Food, right off of the grill, abounds from everywhere.

Barbecue is the quintessential summer treat all over the world. It lures us all to get out of the house and to bask in the beautiful, great outdoors. One can relax and sit back and enjoy gentle warm breezes on a summer evening, inhaling the wafting aroma of that fired-up grill. When one thinks of the many summer seasons gone by, it is hard not to be transported back to when we were younger and enjoyed simpler times.

Here, in Los Angeles, the barbecue begins summer, and reminds us of pool parties and trips to the beach, when we were kids. A time of toasting marshmallows, and having to wait an appropriate amount of time after eating, before being allowed to go back in the water. We remember the times when great musicians came over for a jam session and stayed for hamburgers and hot dogs. This is a time when we must think about how we can still succeed at dancing the Limbo, after filling our tummies with so much fabulous Cue! Let’s do it again next week!