Santa Maria Style Barbecue recently stumbled into an epic barbecue kerfluffle this week, but we’re not trading barbs or blows–we’re just trying to keep the peace.

Apparently, it all started when Texas Magazine, in a large cover story on barbecue, declared that “Texas barbecue has no peer on earth.”

This prompted the Charleston City Paper, in the heart of Carolina barbecue country, to pen a stinging rebuttal titled “Barbecue nonsense, Texas style.”

We’re not picking sides, but we do appreciate this shout-out from the Charleston City Paper: “Brisket, sausage, and ribs wrapped in brown paper are fine and wonderful things, delights that every barbecue lover should try. But, Memphis-style dry rubbed ribs and a properly-smoked Santa Maria tri-tip are things of beauty, too.”

But the City Paper doesn’t pull punches when it comes to Texas Magazine: “Their proclamations are intentionally inflammatory — unseemly cries for attention, schoolyard bullies drawing lines in the playground sand.”

In the Santa Maria Valley, small-town hospitality is one of our community charms. So we ask: Can’t we all just get along?

We’ve always said (as have many others) that Santa Maria Style Barbecue definitely holds its own against the “big boys” of American regional barbecue, such as Texas, the Carolinas, Kansas City and Memphis.

We’ll just leave it at that, and let you decide which you like best. Pass the pinquitos and hold the punches!