Carter’s on the Camber, Portsmouth

Today has been grey, wet and windy. In short, a perfect day for a seaside stroll! Most people prefer the seaside during the summer, a perfectly rational choice, however I cannot abide the seafront in Southsea during summer. Families jostling for space on a crowded beach, semi-clad youths drinking and littering and old people wearing full on coats walking ridiculously slow…

Call me a summertime Scrooge but I prefer my walks with a bit of drama, waves crashing along the seawalls sending spray through the air, being exposed to the roaring winds threatening to blow you headlong into the surf and, best of all, none of the aforementioned crowds as everyone sensible is sat inside with a lovely cup of tea (apart from a few hardcore joggers and dog walkers, dog’s still gotta go innit)!

I ended up in historic Old Portsmouth where Carter’s on the Camber serves their delicious selection of barbecued meats, smoked good ole American fashioned. It’s not the easiest the place to find but certainly worth the effort. They have been open since the beginning of the year but it’s taken me this long to visit. Shame on me!

They had a choice of beef brisket, rib and pulled pork and eventually went for the pulled pork as it was their most popular selling meat. Pork shoulder had been dry rubbed, injected with brine for moisture and then smoked. Due to the facilities of their cabin this is reheated under a grill,not ideal but the resulting meat was still tender with a lovely smoky flavour and the effort and love put into the preparation was obvious. This is served on an ok bread roll, with a creamy, crunchy ‘slaw and their homemade BBQ sauce which cut through with a little vinegary tang. Only one place to eat this bad boy, back on the beach!

I have been spoilt by super quality BBQ meals by the likes of Pitt Cue Co and the Ribman recently but this has mostly been in London. Carter’s on the Camber now gives the people of Portsmouth and Southsea the chance to sample big portions of good quality American BBQ food made with care and attention at more than reasonable prices. Visitors to Gunwharf Quays shopping centre would do better popping just over the water to eat here than queuing to eat at generic chains.

They are currently open on Saturdays until Christmas before a short break as the owners are expecting a baby in January. That’s a excusable reason I suppose… I shall be frequenting much more often next spring and summer especially as three top pubs are within spitting distance! Now where’s that napkin…?

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