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View Full Version : Have you tried smoking brisket fat side up on WSM


BriGreentea
02-05-2018, 08:29 PM
I only tried this once and weather issues were part of the problem so turned out kind of dry.

I was watching a video on a guy smoking a brisket and one guy said to the other:
Shouldn't you cook fat down since the heat comes from the bottom?
Reply: The water pan, pushes the heat to the sides, then around the dome. So you'd want the Fat side up on a WSM.

You agree or disagree? I'm down for it except my nice bark won't be uniform.

Lobsterbake
02-05-2018, 08:48 PM
Interested to hear responses - have always used fatty side down with meats.

Thanks,

Mark

lankster35
02-05-2018, 08:55 PM
too bad this is a question for WSM......can't answer but on anything I cook a brisket on it is fat side up.

Happy Hapgood
02-05-2018, 09:06 PM
When I first started smokin on my WSM I used water and did them fat side up. After I stopped using water it was down. Better results since then but everyone has their own approach.

Czarbecue
02-06-2018, 03:38 AM
I did fat side up all the time when I had my WSM. Ultimately the texture of your bark will depend on your rub, so donít let the fat side up/down fool you on that. Pepper heavy rubs will get you the best bark formation. Check out Louie Muellerís briskets, which supposedly have a 9:1 pepper/salt ratio.

The only thing you will miss is the smoke ring. The smoke ring will go towards the fat and very little to the meat if you have a water pan/deflector going on.

I normally do a 2:1 ratio for pepper myself.

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Nuco59
02-06-2018, 06:25 AM
Fat side up? For the WSM, the water pan shielding and the main heat being at the dome may be a real thing to consider. It seems to at least be worth the experiments. There are so many variables, you'd have to do a series to know if it will be your go to technique. One really dry one and one really good one will give you nothing but doubts :grin:

Don't own a wsm- maybe one day. Right now, I just have a UDS and direct wood fired vertical cabinet. Fat side down - every time.

wahoowad
02-06-2018, 07:07 AM
I personally do not believe there is enough difference in the heat gradient from the grill grate surface (where the bottom of the brisket rests) to the top of the brisket which is going to be 3 or 4 inches high at max, a good portion only being about 2" above the grate, to make a difference.

I cook fat side down because (1) I feel a little apple juice spritzing onto the meat helps my bark formation, and (2) I don't want my bark hitting and moving around on the grate and getting rubbed off.

Queencity
02-06-2018, 08:03 AM
I've done it both ways, sometimes i flip the brisket over if i feel I'm not getting the appearance that i want. Haven't noticed much differance either way imo.

daninnewjersey
02-06-2018, 08:14 AM
I've done it both ways, sometimes i flip the brisket over if i feel I'm not getting the appearance that i want. Haven't noticed much differance either way imo.

+1....I think you'll find 50% of people cook fat side up and 50% fat side down. I've done quite a few in my drum smoker (with heat diffuser). Really no difference in end product....for me anyway....

Beer/Meat/Victory
02-06-2018, 08:54 AM
Down, wrap, up. That's how I do it and it seems to work. Experiment, and find what you like...that's half the fun.

smoke ninja
02-06-2018, 09:14 AM
Im a flipper. Too much heat on either side beats it up

el luchador
02-06-2018, 11:08 AM
I like fat side up. I think it slows evaporation

BriGreentea
02-06-2018, 06:27 PM
I did fat side up all the time when I had my WSM. Ultimately the texture of your bark will depend on your rub, so donít let the fat side up/down fool you on that. Pepper heavy rubs will get you the best bark formation. Check out Louie Muellerís briskets, which supposedly have a 9:1 pepper/salt ratio.

The only thing you will miss is the smoke ring. The smoke ring will go towards the fat and very little to the meat if you have a water pan/deflector going on.

I normally do a 2:1 ratio for pepper myself.



Thank you! I will try that! I have a hunch it will come out better fat side up we will see. I'm more of a salt and sugar guy with spice on my bbq rub but I can do salt and pepper no problem. I go back in forth from Adkins rub to Salt Lick rub.
Oh and I went to Louie Muller in Taylor, TX last November as I was in Austin area with people and Franklin's was under construction so next best thing the guy tells me is Louie Muller and it was the best bbq I've had in Texas and I've been to a lot! Lots of pepper for sure!

WareZdaBeef
02-06-2018, 06:57 PM
My briskets don't have a fat side. Only bark sides.

mrp116
02-06-2018, 10:48 PM
Have been smoking in a WSM 15 years. No difference. Don't overthink it. It's not like successfully launching Falcon Heavy. At worst you'll end up with a bunch of great tasting meat.

Piggysquealers
02-07-2018, 01:37 AM
I personally do not believe there is enough difference in the heat gradient from the grill grate surface (where the bottom of the brisket rests) to the top of the brisket which is going to be 3 or 4 inches high at max, a good portion only being about 2" above the grate, to make a difference.

I cook fat side down because (1) I feel a little apple juice spritzing onto the meat helps my bark formation, and (2) I don't want my bark hitting and moving around on the grate and getting rubbed off.

Legit advice

Cook
02-08-2018, 03:56 PM
I'll leave the other's opinions where they are. I'll only add that if you had a dry brisket, it wasn't the fat up/down that made the difference.

SmoothBoarBBQ
02-08-2018, 05:56 PM
Anybody done a biscuit test on the WSM with / without water to see exactly how the heat moves across the meat? Just curious and I think that particular test would put an end to the fat side up/down debate for this particular scenario.

On my kamado when I use the heat deflector the heat really does come up and over the top of the meat as it exits through the stack... confirmed by biscuit test. I have always believed the fat cap should be facing the hottest part of the cooker, so I got fat side up on my kamado and fat side down on my reverse flow offset.

As others have said it likely doesn't make much difference and internal fat is what really matters in regards to moisture.

LloydQ
02-08-2018, 11:43 PM
I'll leave the other's opinions where they are. I'll only add that if you had a dry brisket, it wasn't the fat up/down that made the difference.

Yeah, briskets are going to do what they are going to do. Best one i ever had came off a WSM.