The Santa Maria Style Barbecue Menu

February 17, 2009 at 9:57 pm 6 comments

Santa Maria Tri-Tip BarbecueThe traditional cuts of Santa Maria Style Barbecue are top-block sirloin and tri-tip, a triangular bottom sirloin cut that originated in the Santa Maria Valley. The meat is rolled in a mixture of salt, pepper and garlic salt before being barbecued over coals of red oak, a native local oak species that contributes a smoky, hearty flavor.

The classic Santa Maria Style Barbecue menu, which was copyrighted by the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce in 1978, also includes fresh salsa, grilled French bread dipped in sweet melted butter, tossed green salad and slow-cooked pinquito beans. Macaroni and cheese is also considered an early staple of the menu.

Pinquitos are small pink beans with a long history in the Santa Maria Valley. No one is quite sure how they first came to the region, but they certainly found a perfect home amid the valley’s fertile soils and mild coastal climate. To this day, pinquito beans are a commercial crop exclusive to California’s Central Coast.

For the most authentic Santa Maria Style Barbecue experience, enjoy your meal with a Pinot Noir, Syrah or other fine wine from the Santa Maria Valley, and finish it off with a dessert featuring fresh, locally grown strawberries.

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A Brief History of Santa Maria Style Barbecue Visitor Resources

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Michael Levasheff  |  May 25, 2010 at 12:40 am

    I am planning a visit to the area and I want to know the best places to get “original santa maria barbecue” served the way it is supposed to be serve with salad and pinquito beans.

    Thanks much!

  • 2. santamariavalleybbq  |  May 25, 2010 at 4:35 am

    Hi, Michael, great to hear! Click on the “Local BBQ Restaurants” link at the upper right of this blog for a list of local restaurants specializing in Santa Maria Style Barbecue. You can’t go wrong with the Far Western Tavern and Hitching Post, among others. Enjoy!

  • 3. Faith  |  July 30, 2010 at 12:08 am

    I’m originally from Santa Maria, but moved to the San Gabriel Valley area. I really miss the Santa Maria style BBQ and I found a place that serves nothing but that in Culver City. It’s SO delicious and the REAL THING!

  • 4. santamariavalleybbq  |  August 1, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Hi, Faith, hope you can visit soon for some true Santa Maria Style Barbecue!

  • 5. Bert  |  July 12, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Truly traditional Santa Maria Style BBQ includes macaroni and cheese. I realize that tastes change, but why no reference to the true original?

  • 6. santamariavalleybbq  |  November 1, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Yes, Bert, thanks for the reminder to incorporate mac and cheese.

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