Just wanted to drop by and say hello to everyone. Ive long loved barbecue and finding decent 'cue in Southern NJ can be quite challening, so i took the proveribal bull by the horns and jumped in to start learning the magic of the smoke. Ive become pretty competent on my char-griller when it comes to ribs...to the point that when friends hear I'm firing up the smoker, they tend to drop by . (became a charcoal snob -according to a friend- since i forsaked using briquets in favor of lump charcoal started in a chimney with only paper. No starter fluid in my 'cue) I did try a small brisket on it, once, but that was not very successful. A valiant attempt that failed due to being too tough and too much smoke. Ive recently graduated to a new Masterbuilt 40" electric smoker. Gave it its first run today (a small brisket and a small rack of ribs). Ribs came out pretty good. Brisket (2.75 lb w/ nice fat cap), well, it was much much moister than my last attempt, not bad on smoke (used mesquite and hickory) but was still tough. I got it up to an internal temp of about 180 in about 3-3.5 hrs, rested it for about an hour, did use the 'Texas Crutch' but still managed to get some good bark on it after taking it out of the foil. Since I did manage to make some progress with the brisket, ill be trying this again, just need to solve this toughness thing. From what I know about brisket...its unforgiving, but doable - and since its a favorite of mine, more of it will find its way into my smoker (till I get it right). Looking forward to hearing what tips and tricks you guys have for me - a southerner at heart living in the frosty north.