Tank Jackson Serves Up Catertainment and Fine Swine

Tank Jackson prepares whole hog barbecue for the Carolina BBQ Festival

Tank Jackson calls it “Catertainment.”

“I’m catering to you and I’m also going to entertain the shit out of you. I’m the king of Catertainment.”

And he’s been practicing it, at least the ‘tainment part of that since he was “crawling his way out of his mama.”

“I say crawling out ‘cause I was fighting to get out of there, that’s how excited I am about life. When you taste our fine swine, you’ll notice that.”

That fine swine comes from Holy City Hogs, owned and operated by his royal highness, farmer, pit master and … philosopher? … Tank Jackson.

Tank shared his story during the Carolina Barbecue Festival at Camp North End. He hit the Low and Slow Barbecue Show and dropped some South Carolina Gold. List to hear his episode for thoughts on upside-down hogs and barbecue confit.

It’s a quick one but packed with South Carolina gold.

Bright Orange Barbecue Whirlwind

In retrospect, I should have seen it coming. I caught a picture of Tank with his whole hog early on. He’s hard to miss.

Later, he’s alongside Lewis Donald talking into a TV camera. “Sweet Lew”  is all grins. Tank is talking … kinda fast.

Tank showed up with Michael Letchworth with him. No, they weren’t together. “Anymore.”

Looking back, Michael, the pit master from Sam Jones BBQ was there to watch. And Tank gave the audience a show. Catertainment.

After a handshake and a selfie, he was out like an orange comet in search of his kids and the road home to the low country.

Holy City Hogs: Happy Pigs and a Family Operation

Holy City Hogs raises large breed hogs – “outside where they should be raised” – in immediate proximity to USDA processing facilities “to achieve the highest level of animal welfare attainable.”

“The hogs are happy and we think that shows in the way they taste.”

More specifically, Holy City Hogs raises Ossabaw Island pigs, Old line Durocs and two proprietary cross breeds – a meat hog the Sowega King and a Lard hog the Carolina Black Hoof. The South Carolina-raised pork is available at restaurants in Charleston, New York, New Orleans, and Savannah, among other.

Tank takes his barbecue show on the road often. He offers whole hog on-site cooking classes and “Smoking University.” You can order rub or stickers online, but trust me, Catertainment is best enjoyed in person. Follow Tank Jackson’s Instagram page to keep track of where he is and where he is heading next.

Whole Hog Barbecue on a Roll

Tank was true to his word with a “less is more” approach to the menu offering at the Carolina BBQ Festival.

“I literally do nothing but put salt on it and then cook it a lot lower and a lot slower than more people.”

For festival-goers that ended with a roll split by a thick, salubrious portion of pork pieces. There’s no point in trying to discern the part of the hog. It was all mixed together, as it should be. No sauce.

“Sauce does cover up a lot of shitty barbecue … can also add a really nice unctuousness to it.”

Tank Jackson’s barbecue is most certainly not shitty. However, as he shares in our Carolina Pitmasters Series interview, “as long as it is good, who cares what kind of style it is.” Personally, I’m going to add red slaw and the right kind of barbecue sauce.

Tank Jackson and the Carolina Pitmasters Series

The Low & Slow Barbecue Show partnered with the Carolina BBQ Festival to capture the voices of the Carolina Pitmasters in their element. Tank and seven other ringmasters in the Carolina barbecue circus shared their time during the event, and they offer the Low & Slow audience a glimpse into their world.

Hear from festival organizer Lewis Donald (the podcast’s first two-time guest!), as well as pitmasters Garren Kirkman and Matthew Register here.

Hog farmer and barbecue pit master Tank Jackson with Low & Slow Barbecue Show Host Chigger Willard

About the Author

Low and Slow BBQ favorite - Boston Butt with the host.

Smoked meat, barbecue enthusiast, news journalist, and sports radio broadcaster Michael “Chigger” Willard collects a storybook of life captured through the lens of people he encounters. With a perspective seasoned by small town life in the Deep South, he dedicates conversations to uncovering savory nuggets of information, light-hearted moments of humor, and revealing glimpses of humanity.