Kansas City’s barbecue craze can be traced back to Henry Perry, who in the early 1920s started barbecuing in an outdoor pit adjacent to his streetcar barn, serving slabs of food wrapped in newspaper. Perry’s ‘cue became so popular that fans began imitating his technique and style to create their own unique recipes.
The second wave of barbecue “founders” were the families of Bryant, Gates, Boyd, Harris and Thompson. Kansas City had earned itself a reputation as a renowned stockyard and meat-packing city, making it the ideal migration destination for pitmasters in search of work. Together, their distinctive tastes, talents and flair have created an unprecedented, eclectic barbecue culture recognized on a global scale.
Now, Kansas City barbecue enthusiasts can satisfy their cravings at more than 100 mouth-watering barbecue restaurants dotted around the metro. There’s even the Kansas City Barbeque Society, an organization dedicated to promoting and sustaining the cuisine worldwide. Regardless, from pork and lamb ribs to brisket, burnt ends, pork shoulder, chicken, ham and even jackfruit, visitors and locals alike always find something totally unique to the region.