Chow Town

Chef returns to hometown bringing art of charcuterie to Lawrence

Duck breast ham on baguette slice, roasted Brussels sprouts with vinaigrette and pecans, pork rib pie.
Duck breast ham on baguette slice, roasted Brussels sprouts with vinaigrette and pecans, pork rib pie. Special to The Star

Chef Vaughn Good calls his place a “charcuterie.” It is aptly named, but to me it’s also a barbecue joint.

Good learned the art and science of charcuterie, which includes how to smoke meat, at the prestigious International Culinary Center in New York.

Good offers periodic sessions on how to properly butcher a whole hog, goat or lamb. He can also teach you the basics of sausage-making.

But you needn’t bother to learn all that since you can enjoy the bounty from chef Good’s expertise right there at Hank Charcuterie or at home. He offers a full selection of top quality, locally sourced meats, plus a variety of house-prepared dishes ready to eat.

My advice: Do both. Eat a prepared meal at Hank Charcuterie and buy some meats, sausages, pickles and seasonings to enjoy at home.

I’m looking forward to grilling Hank’s garlic pale ale sausage, chorizo and Andouille. I’ve already used Hank’s Tellicherry Rye Peppercorns for fantastic flavor on scrambled eggs and Jojos. The peppercorns are infused with rye whiskey and then smoked over pecan wood. I love the flavor.

Good’s mission is to help put his hometown on America’s culinary map. Hank Charcuterie is new (it has been open only since last July), but it is off to a great start toward fulfilling that mission.

When you hunger for top quality, locally sourced meat, or a butchery lesson from an expert, or a slice of delicious pork rib meat pie with roasted Brussels sprouts, or duck breast ham, or other charcuterie delights, go to Lawrence. It is worth the trip.

By the way: if you’re wondering, as I did, “Where’s Hank?” Good will politely explain, “Hank is the charcuterie term for a hundred yards of sausage casing.” You already knew that, right?

Hank charcuterie is at 1900 Massachusetts St. in Lawrence. Its telephone number is 785-832-8688 and it can be found on the Web at hankmeats.com.

Ardie Davis founded a sauce contest on his backyard patio in 1984 that became the American Royal International Barbecue Sauce, Rub & Baste contest. He is a charter member of the Kansas City Barbeque Society and an inductee into the KCBS Hall of Flame. He has been interviewed on food shows and writes for barbecue-related publications. His most recent release is “America’s Best BBQ Homestyle: What Champions Cook in Their Own Backyards.”

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