Hurricane

Hilton Head street vendor serving up barbecue to those in need of good meal

Michael Cohen was serving up barbecue to those in need of a good, inexpensive meal on Abraham Cohen Drive Wednesday afternoon.
Michael Cohen was serving up barbecue to those in need of a good, inexpensive meal on Abraham Cohen Drive Wednesday afternoon. rlurye@islandpacket.com

Most streets on Hilton Head Island smelled of pine needles, mud and midst on Wednesday. Some of sewage from septic tanks. Others of sawdust from newly chopped trees.

Not Abraham Cohen Drive. The dirt road off Spanish Wells smelled like barbecue.

For the past three days, Michael Cohen has been working his usual corner, selling plates of barbecue pulled pork, chicken and ribs with potato salad and baked beans for $8 a piece.

It's his usual gig, but more useful than ever to Hilton Head workers in need of a cheap, hot meal.

Cohen said after staying through the storm, he spent a few days clearing trees and checking on properties before he got to work cooking the meat he had in his freezer, kept cold by a generator.

"There was no good on the island," he said.

His mother, Esther, helped man the red tent at the front of the road on Wednesday morning, a white apron over her T-shirt.

"A lot of people like it. They love it," she said.

The Cohens didn't suffer any damage in the storm. It's been mostly clean up and helping other families remove debris. They said they haven't heard of anyone being hurt or losing a home, for which they're grateful.

"I wouldn't stay here another time," Esther Cohen said. "It wasn't good. It didn't feel good."

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