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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 07-03-2010, 06:14 PM   #1
landshark530
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Default Too much smoke flavor??

My wife, bless her non-bbq adoring heart, complains about TOO much smoke flavor with by meats, be it ribs or butts, or fatties.

I'm using a u.d.s. with a 2" vent stack and 1 1/2" intake. Both vents are alsmost always opened just a notch to keep my temps at 250-275.

I have been using oak with a few chunks of with mesquite, hickory, or apple.

I think I will be sticking with the apple, since I get less complaints.

Questions...Am I keeping too much smoke in the uds with the exhaust vent only open a touch? Should I be keeping the exhaust wide open and just adjust the intake?

Or....is my wood the Issue? I normally load the box with oak and dump a chimney of coals over the top.

Thanks in advance for the help.
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Last edited by landshark530; 10-02-2015 at 03:24 AM..
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Old 07-03-2010, 06:53 PM   #2
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You should always have your exhaust FULLY OPEN !!!! That's your problem with the smoke flavor. Adjust the heat with your intakes. Always run the exhaust wide open. Try that on the next cook and you will be very pleasantly surprise. Good luck bro!

You only need a couple or three small fist sized chunks of wood split. Believe me it will be plenty. And do not soak the wood.
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Old 07-03-2010, 07:41 PM   #3
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ALSO...TINFOIL is your friend! Just wrap it earlier! I found out I need to do this with my ribs from my WSM...compared to the UDS...weird...no biggee, I'm just wrapping them at 2 hrs. instead of 3 hrs.
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Old 07-03-2010, 07:46 PM   #4
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It also depends on the meat. Seems to me, the leaner cuts grab the smoke easier. I've ruined a couple of cooks with too much smoke for the cut...
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Old 07-03-2010, 08:23 PM   #5
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Thanks for the response guys! I knew I could count on the brethren.
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Old 07-03-2010, 08:35 PM   #6
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always keep your exhaust vent all the way open, I made the same mistake when I started.. After opening the vent and cutting the amount of wood I used my wife went from hating my Q to being my biggest fan. Id start lowering your wood you use, and just keep adding a little more each cook till you get it dialed in, imo too little smoke goes over better then too much.
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Old 07-03-2010, 08:42 PM   #7
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Sounds like you have 2 issues going on.

1. you should have the exhaust vents wide open to let all stale smoke escape. Control your temps with the bottom vents, not the exhuast vent.

2. Loading up your basket with all wood and dumping lit coals on top would produce a ton a smoke and most likely not the good kind. Load your basket with unlit coals, and toss 1 or 2 chunks of wood in with it. Then dump maybe 1/4-1/2 chimney full of lit coals on top. Wait until you get the blue smoke before you throw on your meat.
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Old 07-03-2010, 08:51 PM   #8
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Another thing is I have found that mesquite can be overpowering if I use too much of it. I normally only use mesquite when I am smoking big cuts of meat like briskets and butts or when I am grilling steaks. Even then, I mixed it in with oak and hickory when I'm smoking. Just my two cents worth.
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Old 07-03-2010, 08:56 PM   #9
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Exhaust is always wide open. Its all bout intake control.

I had the same complaint bout my UDS, BUT what i found out was it was the flavor of the fat dripping on the fire and vaporizing and going back into the meat. Once i used a drip pan, that flavor was gone. it may be that the wife doesnt like that fatty smoke flavor that others like. i always thought it was the wood smoke but once i used 100% natural rancher fuel with no drip pan and still had that flavor, i knew what it was.

Try it out and see what happens. Gotta have "wife insurance.."I know alot like that flavor and alot dont.
Just my two cents.
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Old 07-03-2010, 11:28 PM   #10
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Thanks again for the ideas. I'm starting 3 butts in the morning and will try several of the ideas out.
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Old 07-05-2010, 04:40 PM   #11
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When I first started out, I was using Hickory and way to much of it. I switched to apple and the wife is much happier.
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Old 07-05-2010, 04:49 PM   #12
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We have the exact same issue, I switched to CHERRY and it delivers a very gentle and sweet smoke, really not harsh at all. Give that a try.............
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