Richard’s Bar-B-Q, Salisbury
Richard Monroe
522 N Main St
Salisbury, NC 28144
(704) 636-9561

“Richard’s Bar-B-Q was originally T&F Barbecue and opened its doors on Council Street (just off Main Street near the courthouse) in Salisbury in 1935. This tiny side street establishment only had seven stools at a counter. T&F’s owners, Popeye Trexler and Grant Fories, served such a good product that people had to stand outside on the sidewalk and eat their sandwiches. Still they came.

It was the “biggest little place” in North Carolina says C.G. “Guy” Clodfelter when he and Tom Heffner worked there as teenagers. Guy and Tom ultimately bought the place and continued to run it for many years. Guy sold his interest to Tom due to poor health. The Heffner family moved the business down the street to its present location on North Main Street. Tom, Jr. put Richard Monroe (present owner) in charge as manager in 1974.

Richard hand chops the barbecue. It is chopped larger than most, but not coarse. It has a good smoky pork flavor and deep smoke penetration from the slow roasting. It is very fresh. The inside white mixed with the outside brown keeps the ’cue moist. It was surprisingly good without sauce. With the sauce, your taste buds tell you that you are somewhere east of Raleigh as it tastes like a fine offering of Eastern North Carolina-style barbecue.

The sauce is Eastern North Carolina-style vinegar base with red pepper and spices. The sauce without the meat is fairly hot, not a torch but still hot. On the meat it is the perfect accompaniment for Richard’s ’cue. The barbecue chicken is just simply delicious.”

Excerpts from The Best Tar Heel Barbecue Manteo to Murphy pages 132-133.