For Memorial Day, I decided to do my first no-wrap brisket. Rubbed the six pound brisket with steak rub overnight and put it on the smoker at 210 degrees fat side up at 5 AM (I expected a 9 hours smoke or so because of the 1.5 hours per pound "rule" - that didn't work!) I didn't cut off much of the fat, it was about a 1/2" so, I knew I wouldn't get much flavor through the fat but did score it a little.
I spritz'd it with apple juice every 2 hours or so and here's how it looked at 4 hours.
At 4 hours, it was at about 149 degrees and it stayed between 150 and 161 degrees for almost 6 hours, I almost gave up and wrapped it. About 3:30 it reached 164, then started climbing again. Here it is at 8 hours.
At least my assistant was happy and I tired him out three times chasing a ball!
At 6:30 PM, the brisket had reached 187 degrees and I tried the "toothpick test" for the first time as suggested on this site. I have never tried that before and when the toothpick went in and out a number of places very easily and cleanly, I pulled it, double wrapped it foil and towels then into the cooler. After resting for just over an hour, I pulled and sliced it. It was very moist, tasted great and was tender but still had some "pull" to it. The bark was not as pronounced as I expected (or hoped for) but it was really good.
What's the secret to a heavier bark? Should I have trimmed off a little more fat off the one side of the brisket? Should I let the temperature go up later in the smoke (I started at 210 but, while stuck in the stall, I raised it to about 230).
Thanks for the hints and help.