I can grill like crazy, but I am still pretty green when it comes to smoking -- I think I've smoked about three briskets, three links of sausage, one Boston butt and two racks of ribs. Some of that smoking was done on a smoker that a friend had in storage and wanted me to use until his son moved into a new house.
Anyway, last week I bought an Old Country Pecos smoker, Thermoworks tw8060 and five 60 lb bags of post oak. On Monday, I smoked my Boston butt before my Tw8060 got here, and it turned out really good, even with my built-in thermometer being 20 degrees off. Last night, I did a 12 lb brisket, and it's tender as hell, but it's bitter.
In Austin last night, the winds kicked up to around 20 to 40 mph and it was hard as heck keeping the fire consistent. Hell, it's hard enough for me to do this without the wind blowing like that. I start with a charcoal chimney full of coals and then add like four chunks of post oak to the firebox. For the brisket last night, I ended up using a whole bag of charcoal and a 60 lb bag of post oak.
I've wrapped my briskets before, but last night I did not. It was on the smoker for around 11 hours, and when I got tired of fighting the winds at 6am, I put it in the oven for a little over an hour. I didn't wrap in the oven, either. I pulled it at 205, finally wrapped in foil, and let it rest for over 2 hours this morning.
I guess this is kind of a multi question post... Why am I having to tend to the fire 95% of the time? Why am I burning so much wood? What am I doing wrong? What other advice do you have for me?
In advance, thanks so much for your help.