No trip through lovely Scotland County North Carolina would be considered complete without filling up on some genuine Carolina barbecue. Of course all of the locals here have their own personal favorites so I’ve chosen a few of their top picks to point you all in the tastiest direction possible.
Famous throughout the South is Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q. Many locals claim that Smithfield’s has some of The best pulled pork b-b-q in the South in the location at 402 Plaza Drive in Laurinburg, NC. If you are into retro Americana with 50’s and 60’s music this is the place for you. Complete with pictures of old movies and celebrities gracing the walls. It has a very casual, homestyle atmosphere.
Here you will find a great staff and excellent service. They like happy customers. Their barbecue has a vinegary, sweet and sour taste with just a hint of Oriental flavor. They are open Sunday – Thursday 10 am – 9:30 pm and Friday & Saturday 10 am – 10:30 pm. They accept all major credit cards. You may want to avoid going in on a Sunday around lunch time, however, as that is when they are usually swamped with all of the locals just getting out of church.
Next stop is Cook Out best known for its outdoorsy char-grilled cooking. Currently they have over 250 locations throughout the South. Our stop is conveniently located at 1304 Scotland Crossing Drive in Laurinburg, NC.
Cook Out is a family owned fast food restaurant with an extensive menu and awesome food, surely something for everyone. Sadly, however, the customer service is seriously lacking. So, if you are craving some super good barbecue, you’re in a hurry, and poor service doesn’t really matter to you, head on over to Cook Out – you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
A bit off the beaten path is a little gem that I’m sure you will find well worth the trek. General McArthur’s Restaurant is sure to please. Located at 13661 Barnes Bridge Road in Laurinburg, NC it is nearly always busy. Local patrons will tell you that you haven’t had North Carolina barbecue until you’ve eaten at the General’s.
All I can say here, folks, is WOW! North Carolina home-style cooking with lots of variety. There are framed quips and quotes hanging throughout this straight-up-country building complete with pew style seating. It boasts a nice family atmosphere.
Here you find a genuine southern buffet heaped to overflowing with meats, veggies, and breads. There is also a full salad and dessert bar. You certainly will not go home hungry from this one!
They have a broken set of hours as follows: Lunch is served Wednesday – Friday from 11 am – 2 pm, and Sundays from 11 am – 3 pm. Dinner hours run Wednesday – Saturday 5 pm – 8 pm. Stop on by and meet some of the nicest folks in the South.
I’ve saved the ultimate local favorite for last. Stanton’s Barbecue and Fish Camp – the fly-in restaurant. Located approximately 8 miles South of Gibson, NC in a little town called Bennettsville, SC at 2828 Stanton Road.
Stanton’s has been serving the locals here for well over 30-years. It is a family owned and run place complete with an actual runway out in the back to accommodate their fly-in customers. It is famous for their pulled pork barbecue – perfectly cooked, never stringy.
They are open Thurs and Fridays 11-2 and 5 – 8:30 / Saturdays 11-8:30 / Sundays 11-2:30. You may need to call ahead in case you get turned around out there. They can be reached via phone at 843-265-4855 and will be happy to talk you in.
There you have it, my friends, I hope this helps to get you started in the right direction on your quest for great Southern Barbecue Flavor! Happy eating.