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daninnewjersey
06-21-2013, 03:24 PM
Last summer was my first farmer's market and it went really well. I was asked back this summer so of course I jumped at the opportunity. Our first day was supposed to be a week from yesterday. Unfortunately there were thunderstorms galore so the people running the market wisely cancelled last week.
So yesterday was the first day and what a beautiful day it was. Kids in these parts are not out of school yet so I planned on only a so-so turnout. I went light on the ribs and cooked 24 racks hoping some people would show up. The market starts at 8:30AM sharp, runs until 12:30pm and to my surprise I had sold 10 racks in the first half hour. I couldn't believe it but by 11:AM we were sold out. Had to turn a bunch of people away.

Now the really cool part...I get a call from a friend saying "dude you're famous". I said don't F with me what's up? Apparently some famous food critic from Philadelphia was there and bought a rack. This morning he posted on Twitter the following.....I couldn't believe it..
https://twitter.com/CraigLaBan/status/347857949529624576

Honestly I had never heard of this guy but some people in the industry said he's the biggest food critic around. I took a shot and emailed him. Much to my surprise he wrote back...said he really liked my food and I should probably make a few more racks next week since he has more than a few Twitter followers:mrgreen::mrgreen:

Anyway I'm certainly not trying to brag at all....just wanted to share with my Brethren some cool things that can happen in the BBQ world. Oh by the way....these are the smokers I used at the market. One of my buddies said "I can't believe people would eat ANYTHING that was in those greasy trash cans..." :mrgreen::mrgreen:

likeadeere
06-22-2013, 09:54 AM
phooey - BRAG IT UP dude! that's saying a lot - great job, there's a lot to be proud about right there. I'm glad you have reposted your successes, I enjoyed your posts last year. Keep it up Brethren

Big Johnson
06-22-2013, 09:59 AM
That's so awesome Dan. I'm glad to hear it went so well for you. I myself am going to try and hit the Farmers market in my town this year and see how it goes!

daninnewjersey
06-22-2013, 01:44 PM
That's so awesome Dan. I'm glad to hear it went so well for you. I myself am going to try and hit the Farmers market in my town this year and see how it goes!

Thanks guys for the kind words. While I'm no Big Mista...I have learned a few things. I'd be more than happy to share what little I know......

BBQinMI
06-22-2013, 01:53 PM
Thanks guys for the kind words. While I'm no Big Mista...I have learned a few things. I'd be more than happy to share what little I know......

What kind of permit or food license did you have to get? Do you have insurance(just in case)?

What do you sell the ribs for?

daninnewjersey
06-22-2013, 02:39 PM
What kind of permit or food license did you have to get? Do you have insurance(just in case)?
What do you sell the ribs for?

I had to get licensed through the health dept. They want to know EVERYTHING you're going to sell, how you're cooking it, keeping it warm, etc. You can't cook at home...only in an inspected kitchen. Luckily I'm able to use the kitchen at the restaurant where the market is so that's good. Insurance is a must....It's like $50/month....a bargain.

Regarding the ribs...It's kind of a higher end market...so $25/rack :mrgreen::mrgreen:

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
06-22-2013, 04:18 PM
This is great to hear. :thumb:

gtr
06-22-2013, 11:27 PM
Congrats dude! :clap2:

JimmyDAL
06-23-2013, 03:36 AM
Who do you get your insurance from? Type of coverage? Thanks

daninnewjersey
06-23-2013, 12:11 PM
Who do you get your insurance from? Type of coverage? Thanks

It's through The Hartford. I'd have to dig up the policy but it basically covers food sales, liability for some idiot burning themselves on my smokers, etc.

Just BS
06-23-2013, 06:12 PM
That's very cool! You're living the dream. Is there another Farmers Market close by, maybe you can add another day or two a week of smoking ribs...

Smoke House Moe
06-25-2013, 08:01 AM
Congrats. Great compliment.

Keep it up, make some money, and beautify those smokers.
A good looking smoker will draw in a lot of passers-by that would otherwise keep walking.

ButtBurner
06-25-2013, 08:06 AM
I would not touch those smokers.

they just shout of good old down home simple cooking.

I would leave them be

daninnewjersey
06-25-2013, 02:55 PM
beautify those smokers.
A good looking smoker will draw in a lot of passers-by that would otherwise keep walking.

While I do appreciate the kind words I'm gonna go with the old saying..."if it ain't broke, don't fix it.." :mrgreen:

People seem to be drawn to my magic trash cans....

Badlands BBQ
06-25-2013, 07:03 PM
Cool story... Keep up the good work! Where in South Jersey?

daninnewjersey
06-26-2013, 07:10 AM
Cool story... Keep up the good work! Where in South Jersey?

Exit 36 :mrgreen::mrgreen:

Margate...

gaspipe1
06-26-2013, 10:53 AM
Hey Dan, I'm so happy to see this new update! So happy for you we spoke last year and I wanted to do this so bad in my area. Westfield has a FM too but seems they are too busy to contact people who are looking to vend there. Also getting a commercial kitchen has been a challenge for me.

Much success and best of luck!!!!

daninnewjersey
06-27-2013, 02:31 PM
Well.....week #2 for the market went very well. I upped the # of racks to 33 since the kids in this region finished school. Right out of the gate (8:30am opening) I had people in line. Burned through 15 racks in the first hour. slowed down..but stayed pretty steady....and by 10:45 we were sold out :mrgreen::mrgreen:

Got something really nice planned for next Thurs....buddy of mine got me use of a 250 gallon oil tank smoker. Cannot friggin wait....much more cooking capacity....much more. Plus, I'll keep one of the drums for warm holding...staying true to my roots :mrgreen:

Mahoney86
06-27-2013, 03:03 PM
Great news to hear that people are rockin the bbq market in NJ... If you ever want me to come down with my Lang 84 give me a holler.. Id be more than happy to come down, learn how the farmers market scene works as I have quiet a few around my way. Keep up the good work!

manbearpig
06-27-2013, 07:15 PM
Way cool . Congrats!!!

daninnewjersey
07-09-2013, 07:09 AM
Hey Guys, sorry for the delay but it's been kinda nuts around here. Well, another farmers market is in the books. This past Thursday...July 4th...was the craziest market to date. Market opens at 8:30 sharp and there was a pretty long line of shoppers. In anticipation of the crowd I cooked an many racks of untrimmed spares as I could....48 racks.

I had a little help from my new friend below....home made oil tank smoker my buddy made. It has 3 large cooking surfaces inside and is WAY easier to use than dragging my drum smokers around. She was suffed with meaty goodness at 1:30AM and worked like a charm.

Anyway, at 8:30 SHARP the crowd was unleashed and instantly I had a line. People had pre-ordered a total of 12 racks so I didn't have much more to play with. Well....to my surprise...and to a lot of peoples' dismay...I was sold out one hour later. One lady bought the last 6 racks and the people behind her looked pissed :mrgreen::mrgreen:

Anyway...next market is in 2 days then it's on to Wildwood this Firday for the state championship....to drink my face off and learn even more from the pros down there. Hope to see some of you there.....

Mahoney86
07-09-2013, 08:26 AM
Glad to see you are selling out like hot cakes! I wouldn't mind getting myself a little gig like that at all!

Bbq Bubba
07-09-2013, 09:15 AM
Its great that your doing well right outta the gate but be careful. Selling out at the END of the day is a good thing but and hour after opening will lose a lot of customers.

Why not have more product pre cooked and ready to reheat? You sound like your actually losing a lot of possible income?

daninnewjersey
07-09-2013, 12:34 PM
Selling out at the END of the day is a good thing but and hour after opening will lose a lot of customers.
Why not have more product pre cooked and ready to reheat? You sound like your actually losing a lot of possible income?


I know exactly what you're saying and I've thought of it. However, here in NJ the health dept is.....let's just say....."very interested" if you're precooking anything you sell. They have VERY specific rules which must be followed to the letter. These rules require a lot of time and space in a commercial kitchen to follow them properly. Since I'm lucky enough to have a commercial kitchen just to prep in, I can't push it and ask for more of their resources. The only solution I see is a bigger smoker...or 5...which hopefully I can pull off sometime...ala Aaron Franklin...just kidding :mrgreen::mrgreen:

daninnewjersey
07-18-2013, 03:06 PM
Well....another Thursday....another morning at the market. Today was a HOT one. Got to the parking lot and started prepping 36 racks of baby backs. I usually make spares but I wanted to switch it up a bit. Got cooking about 2:30AM and by that time I was already a sweaty mess . By the time they were done it was almost opening time (market opens up at 8:30AM) and man was I glad :mrgreen:
2 hours...and 6 bottles of water later...and we sold out. It got so hot the people were walking around like zombies. I'm really surprised there was not an ambulance call considering how dehydrated some of these people looked. Anyway, anyone in the northeast that's cooking outdoors...please stay hydrated. I know it's not Arizona hot but around these parts it's pretty nasty out...

LMAJ
07-18-2013, 05:17 PM
Brag away!!!

silverfinger
07-18-2013, 05:58 PM
Congrats on your rib success! Great story!

gtr
07-18-2013, 06:01 PM
Loving the story! Very cool - in some ways it reminds me of Big Mista. :cool:

daninnewjersey
07-19-2013, 07:52 AM
Loving the story! Very cool - in some ways it reminds me of Big Mista. :cool:

Being mentioned in the same sentence....even just a little bit....as Mista....WOW. That's more humbling than winning any comp.....:mrgreen::mrgreen:

Smoke House Moe
07-19-2013, 12:26 PM
Congrats on your success. Hopefully you will get some catering gigs out of this.

They line the pockets a little bit nicer (you know how many to cook for).

Just BS
07-21-2013, 10:08 PM
Nice new smoker!

njfoses
07-28-2013, 12:45 PM
Im only about 30 min or so north of Margate. I'll have to check this market out, every Thursday 8:30-12:30?

aawa
07-29-2013, 07:34 AM
That is awesome you are having another successful summer at the farmers market. Keep up the good work

daninnewjersey
07-29-2013, 09:54 AM
Thanks for the kind words, guys. This past Thursday was rainy and grey...not the kind of weather I like on market day. However, the customers that go to the market are really devoted. Despite the rain, there was a line at 8:30AM. Throughout the morning the crowd definitely was smaller but people were there. I cut back a little and did 33 racks hoping the rain wouldn't equate to crappy sales. Much to my surprise we sold out by 10:15 :mrgreen::mrgreen:

I definitely watch the weather channel like a crazy person now....