Years ago, you had to leave Baton Rouge to get really good barbecue. Memphis, the Carolinas, Kansas City and Texas were barbecue destinations—not south Louisiana. But that’s since changed. Baton Rouge has converted its innate appreciation for big flavors and its homegrown grilling skills into a thriving new barbecue landscape. The scene is heavily influenced by nearby Texas, and we tend to favor brisket. But that sauce might have a Cajun kick to it, and we’re putting pecan wood in the smoker instead of hickory. There’s a lot of creative stuff going on in the way of spice rubs, menu items and other cooking techniques, too. Don’t take our word for it. Get out there and start tasting.