Tag Archives: Charlie Vergos

Talking Barbecue with Kenney Dale Johnson : Carolina Style Mustard Barbecue Sauce

Article first published as Talking Barbecue with Kenney Dale Johnson, Drummer for Chris Isaak on Technorati.

blog beyond the sun

I had the opportunity to chat with Kenney Dale Johnson the other day about barbecue. You probably know Kenney as the talented drummer and backup vocalist for Chris Isaak. Kenney and Chris have been performing on the road for over 27 years. Kenney shared ” I’ve been fortunate enough to sample fare from all the over the world, it’s pretty cool. I’m very adventurous.” Kenney was born and raised in Texas, so he knows a thing of two about barbecue. He had the opportunity to sample fare throughout the United States. Kenney recalled some of his favorite barbecue such as ” Carolina’s Mustard Base Barbecue Sauce and Blueberry Based Barbecue Sauce in Nashville.”  Kenney recently spent time in Memphis recording “Beyond The Sun” which was recently released by Chris Isaak and the band. The album is a collection of Sun cover songs from the early days of Sun Studio including Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love”, Jerry Lee Lewis’s “Great Balls of Fire”, Carl Perkins’ “Dixie Fried” and Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” just to name a few of the 36 songs on the album. When in Memphis, Kenney enjoys dining at “Charlie Vergo’s Rendezvous Charcoal Ribs” which uses a very special dry rub. Kenney “bought a bunch of the rub and I use to make chicken, that place is a kick in the pants if you get to go there.”  Well, after I hung up the phone with Kenney, I was intrigued to learn more about  Carolina’s Mustard Base Barbecue Sauce, so I did some research. I became even more interested when I discovered that this sauce was a mash up of German ancestry and American barbecue. So I started experimenting in the kitchen, where I travel through my cooking.  I came up with a recipe I know you’ll love. It’s a perfect balance of tangy and sweet.  I’m also including the recipe for Rendezvous Famous Seasoning Rub. I did not dare tamper with a best in class recipe. Hope you take the opportunity to enjoy both recipes while we head into the height of the summer barbecue season. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Kenney for his time and for the inspiration from his music and his food adventures.

From by the bay wishing you some Rockin’ barbecue memories!

Carolina Style Mustard Barbecue Sauce
1 cup prepared yellow mustard
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 bay leaveDirections
Combine all ingredients into a medium sauce pan on high heat, bring to a boil, stirring constantly, Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occassionally. Cool and store in an airtight container over night in the refrigerator. Can be used as any other barbecue sauce, especially with pork or chicken.

World Famous Rendezvous Dry Seasoning Rub
From Charlie Vergos Rendezvous Restaurant in Memphis
1/2 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1 tabelspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon celery seed
1 tablspoon paprika
1 tablespoon chili powder

Combine all ingredients together and store in an air tight container until needed.