On this beautiful Saturday afternoon, we decided to make our way over to Burlington, NC for our 2nd stop on the Historic North Carolina Barbecue Trail. Hursey’s Bar B Que now operates 4 locations throughout the Graham-Burlington-Mebane area since first opening in 1960. Hursey’s serves up pork shoulders and hams cooked over wood coals the old fashioned way. They also serve award winning fried chicken, seafood, ribs, sides, and homemade desserts. At this location, they have a takeout counter, along with a dining room with a wait staff.
The fire pit and wood were visible as soon as you pulled up in the parking lot. The tall brick chimney and wood stack stood front and center, right next to the front door. Though the restaurant is located at a busy intersection, it had a homey, old-fashioned feel inside. There was lot a memorabilia on the walls commemorating the joint’s history. There was even a small TV on the wall showing sports news.
On a Saturday, just after 11am, we were seated right away and immediately presented with fresh hushpuppies and honey butter. Our waitress was very friendly, efficient and straight to the point. We couldn’t have asked for better service.
I ordered the BBQ and chicken combination plate which came with chopped pork BBQ, fried chicken thigh, fries, slaw and hushpuppies. The price was $8.45 I’d normally just order the BBQ plate, but I wanted the combo to try the award winning fried chicken and I’m glad I did…
The chicken was fresh out of the fryer, still steaming when it arrived. I don’t eat fried chicken often, but when I do, it’s typically from the grocery store or fast food. This chicken was on another level. It was very fresh and extremely crispy, unlike I’ve had before. The pork was very tender and juicy, but lacked some flavor in my opinion. Maybe I didn’t get a fresh batch, but it didn’t have much flavor and my mother and I thought it kinda tasted like roast beef.. Adding some Texas Pete or the house dip helped out a bit, though. The dip was pretty thin and quite sweet. It smelled of ketchup and had a syrupy texture. The slaw tasted very fresh, the cabbage was crisp, and it was slightly sweet with a light amount of mayo. Very finely chopped like the BBQ. It was a white slaw in which my mother exclaimed “may be the best slaw” she’s ever tasted. The hushpuppies had a light brown crust and soft insides with onion bits. They were above average but not the best I’ve ever had. The fries were very good and crispy, but I could’ve done without them.. I’m more of a hushpuppy guy. I’ve never met a hushpuppy I didn’t like and the honey butter was a nice touch.
We couldn’t resist the appeal of the very reasonably priced homemade desserts. We ordered banana pudding ($1.79) and the strawberry cobbler w/ ice cream ($3.49). The former had a thick vanilla pudding with banana slices and a soft cake-like layer. It was delicious but I thought it could’ve used another texture component like wafers or whipped cream. The cobber was delightful with the ice cream. Our serving was a little light on the crust, but it was still incredible.. I have a soft spot of ice cream and baked good. Who doesn’t?
My dad ordered the 2 piece dark chicken dinner w/ fries, slaw, hushpuppies ($5.69) My mom ordered the fried shrimp plate with slaw, green beans, and hushpuppies ($8.79). They pretty much had nothing bad to say about this place either. Our entire order came out to be about $30 and we were all full, even with some leftovers. Overall, we were very impressed with Hursey’s BBQ, agreeing that they are certainly worthy of top honors in NC Barbecue. I hope to make it back here when I’m in the area, and I’m excited to continue my journey through the NC Barbecue Trail.
Restaurant: Hursey’s BBQ
Location: 1834 S Church St, Burlington, NC
Overall Rating: 4/5