Located in the parking lot of East Nashville’s Porter Road Butcher, the Gambling Stick uses only local, seasonal ingredients (including pasture-raised meat from PRB) to make their Appalachian heritage–inspired barbecue. Owner Matt Russo is a Culinary Institute of America–trained chef and former Porter Road employee who smokes all his meat low and slow over cherrywood. In addition to the ubiquitous pulled pork, the Gambling Stick offers dry-aged beef brisket with a peppery crust, using the burnt ends in the baked beans. His hot links are excellent, as is his Texas-style giant beef rib, and his specialty “pigsket,” a special cut of pork that evokes the best parts of porky goodness and beef brisket.