Well, with rib contest season on my doorstep I wanted to compare my two smokers to see which one will be used on the road this summer. Over the winter I purchased a WSM 22 and a BBQ guru for temp control. After a few trial runs over the winter I am slowly getting it figured out, and am getting pretty close. I have been using my MES 40 electric for about the last 3-4 seasons with wonderful results.
Today I rubbed up 2 racks of BB Ribs and fired up the two smokers. (also have identical turkey breasts sill going, results to come). I set both at 230 deg and both held temp as they should. 3-2-1 was the method, which means (for me-) 3hrs smoke, 2hrs foil, 15 min to set sauce n done. My family likes them a little over done with clean bones, so that is what I do for home.
Both rack were pulled at the same time. Tenderness was about the same. MES ribs were a little prettier on the bark, but the cut sides of the ribs looked much much better on the WSM ribs due to a quarter in smoke ring. No smoke ring on the MES ribs. Taste was a toss up.
Conclusion: It's hard to beat the convenience of the MES. Although setting up the WSM isn't that much more work. I was hoping for a clear winner today but there just isn't one. If I'm going somewhere where power is an issue and don't want to haul n deal with the Honda generator, I'll bring the WSM. As far as competition goes, I think the WSM will get me some appearance points due to the smoke ring. So...ehhh...
Left: WSM 22 Right: MES 40
TOP: WSM 22 BOTTOM: MES 40