Woman calls 911 to report ‘pink meat’ at a North Carolina barbecue restaurant...

The Tradition

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A dispute at a barbecue restaurant caused a beef that resulted in a customer calling 911 over "pink meat."

The restaurant owner responded by telling her that the meat turns pink when it's smoked, so that's exactly what it should look like.

The barbecue brouhaha occurred at Clyde Cooper's Barbeque in Raleigh, North Carolina, last week, when a customer named Annie Cooke became upset that the meat in her barbecue order was pink.

Clyde Cooper's owner Debbie Holt told TODAY Food that Cooke returned about 10 minutes after picking up her order and said it wasn't done.

"I said, 'Oh honey, that is the pink from the smoke," Holt explained. "I said, 'Honey, it is done,' and she couldn't comprehend it."

Woman calls 911 to report 'pink meat' at a BBQ restaurant
A shot of the "pink" smoked meat sold at Clyde Cooper's Barbeque in Raleigh, North Carolina. Clyde Coopers BBQ via Facebook

Holt said even other nearby customers tried to explain to Cooke that it's supposed to look pink, and even if it were cooked more, it would still be pink.

"It's ridiculous, especially because we're an old, established institution in Raleigh, so you know we know what we're doing, and then you're telling me it's not done," said Holt, who has been the owner for about 15 years at a restaurant that was established in 1938. "I haven’t encountered anyone that thick-headed in a long time."

Holt said she then offered Cooke a piece of chicken instead and said Cooke came and got it.

Cooke told local news station WRAL that she was not served anything else or given a refund, which Holt disputed, saying she has Cooke on camera taking the chicken.

Following the clash over the pink meat, Cooke then called 911 after leaving the restaurant because she believed Holt was being dismissive of her concerns.

“That’s just the way I felt — that’s the reason I called the cops, because I couldn’t get my money back or I couldn’t get a different plate," Cooke told WRAL.

A transcript of the call was obtained by WRAL.

“I had ordered some food from there and the barbecue is pink,” a woman can be heard telling 911. “I asked for either for them to cook it some more or exchange my order. They are saying that the meat is supposed to be pink. I asked for them to change my order and they said they are not giving me my money back or they are not going to trade out the food.”

The police arrived but soon left without any issues, according to Holt.

"I saw out of the corner of my eye and thought, 'Lord have mercy, is she calling the police on us?'" Holt said. "When the police officer arrived, he kind of had a little smirk and rolled his eyes a little. I said that food is done, and he said, 'I got you,' and turned around and left."

Cooke followed by giving the restaurant a (now-deleted) one-star review on Google, also writing that the cheese in the mac and cheese was not melted. Clyde Cooper's then responded in a Facebook post on Nov. 4 about the incident.

312453818_10159194500268263_9170402789713847395_n.jpg



"The Mac and cheese, she also complained about in her review, has a smoked cheddar mixed in that will not melt," the establishment wrote. "It just adds flavor. There are other cheeses in the roux we make for the base of the Mac and cheese that does melt, and then we add in the smoked cheddar.

"We did not offer her another plate because 1) her argument was invalid — the meat was in fact “done,” and 2) she did not mention anything wrong with the sides when we was at the restaurant complaint of 'not done' bbq, so we gave her her original plate back and never touched it... just gave her chicken as well."

Cooke told WRAL she is considering filing a civil lawsuit.

In the days since the dispute went public, Holt said people have been sending her all types of pink items, from baskets to stuffed bears.

314682093_10159207899138263_6885930089071173103_n.jpg


"And then I was in the voting line today, and before you knew it, everyone in the area was talking about the pink barbecue," Holt said. "It's been fun."


The customer from Hell. Good grief.
 
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fredjr82

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A few years back I had a buddy smoke a whole turkey for me. He brought it over and after he left I dug in. The inside had that smokey red color. I just couldn't with turkey. It just threw me off. I ended up pitching most of it.
 

Finance85

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Oct 22, 2003
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I'm surprised the customer didn't complain about the cole slaw. People in NC put cole slaw on everything. Not just a side; a condiment.
 
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thewop

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A dispute at a barbecue restaurant caused a beef that resulted in a customer calling 911 over "pink meat."

The restaurant owner responded by telling her that the meat turns pink when it's smoked, so that's exactly what it should look like.

The barbecue brouhaha occurred at Clyde Cooper's Barbeque in Raleigh, North Carolina, last week, when a customer named Annie Cooke became upset that the meat in her barbecue order was pink.

Clyde Cooper's owner Debbie Holt told TODAY Food that Cooke returned about 10 minutes after picking up her order and said it wasn't done.

"I said, 'Oh honey, that is the pink from the smoke," Holt explained. "I said, 'Honey, it is done,' and she couldn't comprehend it."

Woman calls 911 to report 'pink meat' at a BBQ restaurant'pink meat' at a BBQ restaurant
A shot of the "pink" smoked meat sold at Clyde Cooper's Barbeque in Raleigh, North Carolina. Clyde Coopers BBQ via Facebook

Holt said even other nearby customers tried to explain to Cooke that it's supposed to look pink, and even if it were cooked more, it would still be pink.

"It's ridiculous, especially because we're an old, established institution in Raleigh, so you know we know what we're doing, and then you're telling me it's not done," said Holt, who has been the owner for about 15 years at a restaurant that was established in 1938. "I haven’t encountered anyone that thick-headed in a long time."

Holt said she then offered Cooke a piece of chicken instead and said Cooke came and got it.

Cooke told local news station WRAL that she was not served anything else or given a refund, which Holt disputed, saying she has Cooke on camera taking the chicken.

Following the clash over the pink meat, Cooke then called 911 after leaving the restaurant because she believed Holt was being dismissive of her concerns.

“That’s just the way I felt — that’s the reason I called the cops, because I couldn’t get my money back or I couldn’t get a different plate," Cooke told WRAL.

A transcript of the call was obtained by WRAL.

“I had ordered some food from there and the barbecue is pink,” a woman can be heard telling 911. “I asked for either for them to cook it some more or exchange my order. They are saying that the meat is supposed to be pink. I asked for them to change my order and they said they are not giving me my money back or they are not going to trade out the food.”

The police arrived but soon left without any issues, according to Holt.

"I saw out of the corner of my eye and thought, 'Lord have mercy, is she calling the police on us?'" Holt said. "When the police officer arrived, he kind of had a little smirk and rolled his eyes a little. I said that food is done, and he said, 'I got you,' and turned around and left."

Cooke followed by giving the restaurant a (now-deleted) one-star review on Google, also writing that the cheese in the mac and cheese was not melted. Clyde Cooper's then responded in a Facebook post on Nov. 4 about the incident.

312453818_10159194500268263_9170402789713847395_n.jpg



"The Mac and cheese, she also complained about in her review, has a smoked cheddar mixed in that will not melt," the establishment wrote. "It just adds flavor. There are other cheeses in the roux we make for the base of the Mac and cheese that does melt, and then we add in the smoked cheddar.

"We did not offer her another plate because 1) her argument was invalid — the meat was in fact “done,” and 2) she did not mention anything wrong with the sides when we was at the restaurant complaint of 'not done' bbq, so we gave her her original plate back and never touched it... just gave her chicken as well."

Cooke told WRAL she is considering filing a civil lawsuit.

In the days since the dispute went public, Holt said people have been sending her all types of pink items, from baskets to stuffed bears.

314682093_10159207899138263_6885930089071173103_n.jpg


"And then I was in the voting line today, and before you knew it, everyone in the area was talking about the pink barbecue," Holt said. "It's been fun."


The customer from Hell. Good grief.
My polar opposite thoughts about each upon reading the poor grammar of both parties:

Of the customer: 'what an uneducated loser, bless her heart, she should get out more.'

Of the owner: 'I bet than woman makes some great bbq...'
 

The Tradition

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North Carolina style barbeque is awful. I could see her calling 911 over taste, but not color.

There are two different styles. Eastern style uses a thin, vinegar-based sauce with a lot of pepper in it. That is indeed an acquired taste. Lexington (or Piedmont) style uses a tomato-based sauce that's probably more to your liking.

There are many wonderful BBQ joints in NC.

 

UNCLawHawk

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My only comment in this thread is Clyde Coopers is delicious. The barbecue is decent, but the hushpuppies and Brunswick stew are probably the best I have ever had. I gained a lot of weight the summer I worked for the NC DOJ in Raleigh and could walk there!
 

The Tradition

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My only comment in this thread is Clyde Coopers is delicious. The barbecue is decent, but the hushpuppies and Brunswick stew are probably the best I have ever had. I gained a lot of weight the summer I worked for the NC DOJ in Raleigh and could walk there!

I've been to The Pit in Raleigh many times, but I've never been to Clyde's. Will go the next time I'm there!
 

UNCLawHawk

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I've been to The Pit in Raleigh many times, but I've never been to Clyde's. Will go the next time I'm there!
I hope you like it. That summer was nearly 20 years ago, and it looks like the place changed hands about 15 years ago, so I hope they have kept up with the quality. I don't get up that way much anymore - would be interested in hearing if you like it.
 

Finance85

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Oct 22, 2003
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There are two different styles. Eastern style uses a thin, vinegar-based sauce with a lot of pepper in it. That is indeed an acquired taste. Lexington (or Piedmont) style uses a tomato-based sauce that's probably more to your liking.

There are many wonderful BBQ joints in NC.

Lexington style still has a lot of vinegar. I'm not sure why people feel the need to ruin perfectly good pork with vinegar or cole slaw. It's nearly as bad as cooking a good steak well done and adding ketchup.
 
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Lindemann

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There are two different styles. Eastern style uses a thin, vinegar-based sauce with a lot of pepper in it. That is indeed an acquired taste. Lexington (or Piedmont) style uses a tomato-based sauce that's probably more to your liking.

There are many wonderful BBQ joints in NC.

Yep, the stuff I had was basically pulled pork soaked in sweet pickle juice. The sauce was pretty much just ketchup. I was in eastern NC.

Maybe I got a bad sample.
 

Cougar63

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Oct 4, 2004
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If I like KFC's cole slaw, which region of the US's cole slaw would I enjoy? I know there's vinegar cole slaw and cream cole slaw, right?
 

lonestar50

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If I like KFC's cole slaw, which region of the US's cole slaw would I enjoy? I know there's vinegar cole slaw and cream cole slaw, right?
KFC is too sweet. Malcolm Reed's coleslaw recipe is perfect for my tastes
 

TC Nole OX

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Lexington style still has a lot of vinegar. I'm not sure why people feel the need to ruin perfectly good pork with vinegar or cole slaw. It's nearly as bad as cooking a good steak well done and adding ketchup.

Lexington #1 is the best. I drive two hours each way from Blowing Rock just to pick up enough bbq to last several days. I have the recipes and will be cooking up Lexington pork and slaw and a ton of NC style hush puppies for the FSU - UFelon game.

 
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