When twitter users pose the question “who has the best tailgate in Philly?”, you could expect every answer under each thread to say “@philatticus”.
The Philadelphia Atticus Finch username attributed to Dylan (redacted), the “maestro of M lot”, has been replied on dozens, if not hundreds, of tweets from your average user to celebrities:
There have been articles written about the “best tailgates in Philadelphia” and a NFL tailgate show that features “the best” tailgates across the country, but none have had the opportunity to feature the spread that has Philadelphians, Eagles fans from across the globe, and opposing fanbases flock to M lot in hopes to taste some of the finest meats smoked on a Big Green Egg and Kamado Joe in a parking lot from September to January:
“Hey, is this the tailgate I’ve heard about?“
Dylan started smoking meat in 2016 but became more serious with it during the lockdown citing “loneliness and wanting to search for more purpose.” When asked if she ever saw Dylan’s passion for smoking turn into a tailgate wonderland, Jess (redacted), his long time partner, said:
Yes and no. He’s always been a good cook, and he used to joke about moving off the grid and having a farm, or becoming a butcher and making sausage and whatnot, so in that sense it’s not surprising. But he also gets intensely interested in hobbies, and then they sort of flame out and he moves on to the next. Like he also got into photography during the pandemic, and I haven’t seen him hold a camera in over a year. So in the beginning I thought it could go either way.
Jess obviously can sense my love for dad jokes with the “flame out” comment so I wanted to keep it going with what she thinks led to Dylan keeping the “flame on” for this long:
I think it’s a mix of things. He likes meat, that’s mainly what he eats, and he’s the one with the culinary talents in this relationship, so part of it was necessity…he was just trying to feed himself. It was also easier for him once he moved up here, because down in Virginia he was in a 3rd floor apartment that didn’t allow grilling on patios, so he’d have to take the smoker down 3 floors. One of the first things he bought when we moved to the place we’re in now was a green egg. And then of course I think the tailgates are what really made things take off on a bigger scale.
“Always went with Jess and made a ton of friends, but I kinda realized the food was kinda [bleeped out for PG purposes!!]. What better way to have fun than feed and get drunk?,” Dylan adds as to why he decided to bring his culinary talents to the asphalt lots of Lincoln Financial Field.
Of the dozens of tailgates that he has done, a few come to mind when asked about favorites:
I think the Giants playoff game I was in my bag, two briskets, everyone was having a blast. Friendsgiving with Peking duck was insane. Everything was wet but we were all there having a blast.
Dylan only talks about the briskets and duck here, but he fails to mention to plethora of meats he’s brought to cook for his peers such as pork belly, pork shoulder, wagyu brisket, wagyu dino ribs, house cured pastrami, A5 ribeye, wings with Alabama white sauce, racks of lamb, and so much more. But you get the idea.
However, with all of the upside of feeding half of Philadelphia in the 6-7 hours prior to a game starting, there are downsides. “The loading and unloading is brutal,” Dylan adds as he has to pack his truck with the smokers, canopies (if needed), supplies, the food, the drinks, and anything else needed to pull off the best tailgate at the stadium. Still on his to-do list at the stadium?: “Whole hog. Somehow, some way.”
When asked about his future plans to expand outside of tailgates: “I want to do pop ups.”
If you’re ever wondering what’s on the menu, be sure to follow his twitter:
With all of the knowledge Dylan has gained over the years in cooking & smoking hobbies, he is more than happy to offer advice to others looking to start their own journeys and/or enhance their current knowledge. He has been and continues to be one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet in the parking lots of Lincoln Financial Field and many are lucky to call him a friend:
I think the biggest takeaway I can provide is this: in every picture you see of 50+ lunatics having the time of their life, you almost never see Dylan partaking. He is selfless beyond comprehension. Not only the prep and the cost, but spending the whole tailgate still working
– Dan (@DanSaysThat)
Dylan spends hours upon hours of making sure people will be fed well. Even giving up sleep a lot of the times. Makes you feel welcome, makes sure you have a good time. Some of the best meat you’ll ever have and always puts on the elite tailgating experience.
– Matt (@DarthDoughBoy)
The meat is so so so delicious but more than anything Dylan is a great friend. He’s brought so many of us together through this tailgate and cooking for us and I’m eternally grateful for that
– Gwenn (@luckeystars)
1st time I came to a tailgate with him was last year and I had never met him in person before. He was so inviting and open to sharing what he made, he really takes pride in his craft and making people happy. And it just so happens that what he makes is always incredible eats
– Ed (@ESRosebud)
The first time I saw dylan it was immediately like you were lifelong friends. I don’t think he can conceptualize a stranger, he treats everybody like family. truly a one of a kind, cut from a wonderful cloth, and might be the most valuable human being in the tailgate scene.
– Mike (@d0cdank)
Charles McDonald (@FourVerts) of Yahoo! Sports recently visited the tailgate:
With the season coming to a close on Sunday, obviously with a Super Bowl win, make sure you keep an eye out on the home schedule in May. Whether you’re a Birds fan or a fan of the opposing team, circle some dates to come down to South Philly and get treated with respect, eat some meat, and drink some Everclear (oh, I didn’t mention that before?)
To follow him on twitter, you can find him @philatticus, but his Instagram page is where you’ll find all the mouth watering posts: @dylans_bbq