Pitmasters

18 Feb 2012

Katy Vine for Texas Monthly

For those in the habit of fetishizing foodstuffs – other recent objects of fancy have included the cupcake and the macaron – Texas barbecue represented an incomparable thing of beauty. It was authentic, geographically unique, and exquisitely simple, yet inscrutably difficult to cook well.

Artistry is not confined to the arts. Such works are possible anywhere an expert is found whom is capable of navigating a task in such a way that others cannot help but watch in awe. Aaron Franklin and the Mueller family are masters of the southern barbecue in much the same way that Katy Vine is a master of story craft. She expertly draws out the tale of these men, building them up as more than mere cooks.1

It is always helpful to be reminded that there is beauty to be found in skilled work of all kinds and not simply from words on a page or actors on a stage. There is an artistry that can be found well beyond the finer arts, if we remember to look for it.

(Via Austin Kleon)

  1. Although, truth be told, it falls apart somewhat towards the middle when she attempts to build Aaron’s story around the power of social media, because she gives up on the narrative thread that she had so carefully woven. I suspect she felt that the Twitter aspect was too significant to ignore, but it hardly feels as if it belongs in this story.