What’s More Important: Barbecue Tradition or Innovation?

The Cotten family of barbecue joints demonstrates the current struggle between the old and the new.

By Leah ScarpelliJuly 21, 2016 10:36 am,

This week, Pecan Lodge in Dallas attempted to deliver a barbecue party by drone. It offered a Pecan brisket sandwich with a side of mac and cheese through UberEats – limited to the first 300 people. Plus, tickets to a party tonight where more barbecue would be delivered by said drone.

But trying to up the ante with technology didn’t work out so well. Customers were unable to place their orders with UberEats,  getting a never-ending “requesting” message on their smartphones. Pecan Lodge has been retweeting customer complaints and its owner says UberEats didn’t have enough drivers on hand, though some Twitter users report their orders were successful. No word on whether the drone party tonight is still happening.

Despite what seems to be an epic barbecue fail, Texas Monthly’s barbecue editor Daniel Vaughn argues that innovation shouldn’t be feared.

What you’ll hear in this segment: 

– How the Cotten family barbecue joints have changed after their original location burned down

– The struggle of tradition versus innovation in Texas barbecue

– Whether a barbecue joint’s name is more powerful than its offerings