Hi, I'm new to the forum and to be honest have never even had smoked food yet. I'm interested in starting out, but before I do have some questions which hopefully will not come across as dumb. I've tried slow cooking both pork and beef in a crock pot as well as in a gas oven. I do not like any spices or seasoning other than salt and pepper and am a very picky eater so cooking my own food is usually a must. Practically all of my meat gets cooked outside on either the gas Weber or over lump charcoal and I was not happy with the results in the crockpot or the oven mainly because of smell and taste. In the crockpot I filled half way with water and cooked for 8-10 hours on low. The meat was super tender which I loved but it had a weird smell and taste. Last night I cooked some pork ribs in the oven. I put them in a foil pan covered with foil and cooked @ 225F for 4 hours after which they didn't look too appealing and had the same smell as they did in the slow cooker so I drained the juices out and finished them @ 425F for 15-20 minutes uncovered. They still had the funny smell and taste. I love meat cooked over lump charcoal, or even on my gas Weber so I'm hoping smoking with lump charcoal might provide me with the results I want. Super tender with a smokey taste rather than this weird funky smell and taste I got from the oven and crock pot. So basically my questions are, Why does the crockpot and slow cooking in the oven the way I did give this specific smell and taste and does smoking meat do the same? Is smoking for me (hopefully it is!) , and if so how should I start? I currently have a Weber Smokey Joe Gold and a Jumbo Joe currently as far as charcoal goes.