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Smoke House Moe
09-16-2012, 09:30 PM
Hey folks.

I have been getting ready to start catering here in MN. Also looking to do some vending at fairs and such. What are some of the better trailer smokers that could accommodate a starter like myself?

Been looking at the Jambo's, Pitmaker's, Klose, Holstein.

jbrink01
09-16-2012, 09:46 PM
If you want to cater, look at FEC500's, Ole Hickory or Southern Pride. If your intent to use charcoal look at the 32 Rebel. I cater, and own 2 FEC500's.

neuyawk
09-17-2012, 10:39 AM
Never heard of Rebel. Why not a backwoods if that's the style one would be looking at?

Jambo's aren't built for catering. I just saw a new rotissurie pit by Klose by a local pitmaster vending at a fair and it was SWEET.

Shipping to MN, Meadowcreek makes great catering smokers and would probably be cheaper for you on same quality than shipping from Texas

jbrink01
09-17-2012, 02:29 PM
Rebel is similar to a Stumps. Nothing like a Backwoods. Cookshack, Ole Hickory and Southern Pride are THE catering and restaurant pits.

Smoke House Moe
09-17-2012, 03:42 PM
Thanks guys. Very helpful.
Do you both cater? Any wise words for a newb?

jbrink01
09-17-2012, 03:48 PM
We cater. Not huge. Depending on the week, we go through 500 - 1000 pounds of meat a week.

INmitch
09-17-2012, 03:49 PM
You might want to take a look at a Southern Yankee. My buddy (and good friend) Shane has a new shop in Ft Wayne IN making them. They've made 6 or 7 in the last couple months and are looking really nice. Hopefully they will have my new one made in the next month. I compete on a 6 footer. Downsizing to a 2' with 12 racks spinnin for comps.:thumb:

neuyawk
09-17-2012, 04:26 PM
Southern Yankees are SWEET but pretty pricey. Bigmista caters with Spicewine if that helps.

Cast Iron Chef
09-17-2012, 05:18 PM
Rebel is similar to a Stumps. Nothing like a Backwoods. Cookshack, Ole Hickory and Southern Pride are THE catering and restaurant pits.

Did you pick the FEC because they are NSF? Some day I want to get something bigger for comps like a Backwoods or FEC. I would also like to do some catering so I was thinking best to go NSF. What have you found?

big brother smoke
09-17-2012, 06:11 PM
NSF is not mandatory for most states whilst catering (check your local regs). Brick and mortar and serving to the public, yes, you will need NSF to be legit.

Pyle's BBQ
09-17-2012, 11:25 PM
You may want to look at an insulated smoker if you are in MN. Are you going to work through the winter?

pawlen
09-18-2012, 12:03 AM
This is a cool sight but my phone is smarter than I am.I don't know if anything is going out or if anything is comung in.So I'm going to cut out if anyone is out there.Smokem if u gotem!

42BBQ
09-18-2012, 01:28 AM
Meadowcreek has a dealer just across the MN border in Wisconsin. You can get smokers with insulated fire boxes. http://www.stcroixbarbecue.com/

kurtsara
09-18-2012, 07:23 AM
This is a cool sight but my phone is smarter than I am.I don't know if anything is going out or if anything is comung in.So I'm going to cut out if anyone is out there.Smokem if u gotem!


did I miss part of the original post, what are you talking about?

jbrink01
09-18-2012, 09:04 AM
Did you pick the FEC because they are NSF? Some day I want to get something bigger for comps like a Backwoods or FEC. I would also like to do some catering so I was thinking best to go NSF. What have you found?

NSF isn't required, but it makes it easier if you have a picky HD inspector. The feature that sold our HD person was the "cook and hold". They like to see that you have a "temp controlled warming cabinet", which the FEC's with IQ4's are after they are done cooking.

Smoke House Moe
09-18-2012, 02:03 PM
Wow, tons of great replies. Thanks to everyone. Keep it coming.

The smaller Cookshack units are more within my starting budget as opposed to the 500. I am also looking at the MeadowCreek TS120 towable unit.

Anyone from Minnesota able to chime in?

Bigdog
09-18-2012, 02:09 PM
We cater. Not huge. Depending on the week, we go through 500 - 1000 pounds of meat a week.

Jeeeeeezzz Jeff, I would call that huge. :icon_bugeyed

jbrink01
09-18-2012, 02:19 PM
And it's almost all my wife my friend. She left her accounting job, soaked up my BBQ knowledge like a sponge and ran with it. We worked hard every weekend while she was employed, and now it's her deal and all she does.

While I'm off playing at a contest this coming weekend, she has $7500 in sales on the books, and that's just for Saturday. She works her arse off, and wouldn't have it any other way. With our group of "help", she makes every school function, earns more than she did as an accountant, and let's me play at contests! I certainly married "up".......

PigTamer
09-18-2012, 09:50 PM
Not in the game,but when you are up and running let me know. I would love to throw you some business if I can.

Smoke House Moe
09-19-2012, 08:07 AM
Thanks Pig Tamer.

Triple T BBQ
10-14-2012, 11:51 AM
You need an NSF or UL rated smoker in MN in order to be legal. Sorry. But MN is a bit tougher than other states. I highly recommend you meet with your state inspector for your area before any purchase. You may end up selling that really pretty offset which is just fine for comps but not legal for catering. Also you will most likely need a mid sized location license or access to an existing business or commerical kitchen in order to be allowed to cater. Its possible but you have to work within the guidelines.

Utah Jake
10-14-2012, 01:00 PM
I have and use these in vending so I know their strengths and weakness. Knowing all I do I would look at two units. The Traeger COM200 and the Lang 84 Deluxe with warming cabinet. The Traeger goes for $9000 new but can be found for $4500 used or less for the older SMK200 which is the only in an older model but in many ways better than the newer COM model. Both the Traeger models will hold 250 chicken quarters and cook even top to bottom rack. Cost to run the Tragers is about 3 pounds of pellets per hour but with BBQ pellets $10 per 25 pounds at Home Depot, it's good.

SeaDogBBQ
10-14-2012, 07:44 PM
BBQ pellets $10 per 25 pounds at Home Depot, it's good.

Isn't there a difference between the home depot pellets and hardwood food grade pellets that are sold for about $1 a pound?

Thanks.
Jeremy

BigBellyBBQ
10-15-2012, 11:47 AM
I use Southern Pride...NSF approved and use whole logs, propane assist...dont have to worry about pellets when cooking 20 or 30 butts and 15 briskets...

SeaDogBBQ
10-15-2012, 05:41 PM
Isn't there a difference between the home depot pellets and hardwood food grade pellets that are sold for about $1 a pound?

Thanks.
Jeremy

Disregard my previous post....found the brand on the home depot site. Thanks