Whatever Virginians may have in common with North Carolinians, there has never been anything close to familiarity in the style of preferred barbecue sauces.
North Carolina barbecue joints (Would you really want barbecue from anything more pretentious than a “joint”?) offer smoked pork with a thin, tangy, vinegar-based sauce. Most Virginians insist on a thick, flavorful, tomato-based sauce.
Virginia Beach lawyer Steven Mirman claims he has negotiated a compromise between the two. Mirman tells The Virginian-Pilot he spent years working out the perfect combination of vinegar and ketchup to produce his Old Coots “Carolina Red” BBQ Sauce.
The paper describes it as slightly thicker than water, “a lively, pucker-y balance of vinegar, tomato and a lingering bit of heat.”
With Mirman now turning out the stuff for commercial consumption, it’s available at the Sauce Shoppe in Virginia Beach.