The book cover for Black Smoke: African Americans and the United States of Barbecue with 22 great recipes straight from the pit by James Beard Award Winner Adrian Miller.

An interview with Adrian Miller

Southern Glazer’s Bridget Albert talks to Adrian Miller about his latest book Black Smoke.

Southern Glazer’s Bridget Albert talks to Adrian Miller about his latest book Black Smoke.


Tell our readers what inspired your writing career.


My culinary history writing career is inspired by John Egerton's book Southern Food: At Home, On the Road, In History. In that bookEgerton pointed out that the tribute to African American culinary achievement had yet to be written.


What do your books focus on?


My books focus on different aspects of African American food traditions that have received little or no attention.


What did you research before writing your books?


I've read more than 3,000 oral histories from formerly enslaved people, 500 cookbooks, hundreds of history books, and countless newspaper and magazine articles. 


How many barbecues and soul food restaurants have you been to, for research of course?


For the sake of research, I've eaten my way through the country. I've been to more than 200 barbecue and soul food restaurants in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and the Middle East. Yes, it's a rough job, but someone needs to do it.


Give our reader one fun fact about you.


Being a certified barbecue judge is the best conversation starter that I've ever had.


What is your favorite toast?






About Adrian Miller


Adrian Miller is a food writer, James Beard Award winner, attorney and certified barbecue judge who lives in Denver, Colorado. Adrian is featured on the Netflix hit show High on the Hog: How African Cuisine Transformed America.




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Follow Adrian on social media: @soulfoodscholar


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Adrian supports charitable work and is passionate about helping others. You can lend your support to one of Adrian's causes by following the link below.



Visit The Served Up Book Club library to read more great interviews with our favorite authors.

the presidents kitchen cabinet book cover

The President's Kitchen Cabinet

Check out Adrian Miller's new book which is part of the Served Up Christmas book givaway.