Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

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tri3forme
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Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby tri3forme » Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:59 am

This is the second time in a row that this has happened (and 2nd time ever and 2nd time I've smoked a wagyu)....no smoke ring! Smoked brisket at 250ish for almost 11 hrs. Never wrapped. Only used heart post oak. Rubbed with salt & pepper only and occasionally spritzed it with a mixture of apple cider vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. What gives? I'll post pics.

Now, I was extremely happy with my cook and the brisket turned out great. However, not only do I want my brisket to taste great, I want it to look great too. I know.....I have issues....probably like most of you on this forum.
Last edited by tri3forme on Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby tri3forme » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:04 am

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Last edited by tri3forme on Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:11 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby tri3forme » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:07 am

IMG_2337.JPG
IMG_2342.JPG
IMG_2345.JPG
IMG_2348.JPG


That top pic is from the flat....that's some serious marbling!

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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby bsooner75 » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:21 am

That really is a great looking brisket. I love the bark.

Just saying this so its out there up front but the smoke ring really is just eye candy and means nothing to the taste. From your post though, I get where you are coming from. We eat with our eyes first.

Did you let the meat warm to room temp before cooking or throw it on cold? A cold brisket seems to form a better smoke ring.


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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby tri3forme » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:27 am

bsooner75 wrote:Did you let the meat warm to room temp before cooking or throw it on cold? A cold brisket seems to form a better smoke ring.


Trimmed and seasoned it the day before and pulled it from the fridge about an hour before I threw it on the pit.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby bsooner75 » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:34 am

Hmmmm…there goes my idea. I’ve never cooked Wagyu so hopefully somebody with some experience will chime in


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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby Papa Tom » Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:13 pm

OK here is a solution, although I have never done Wagu or even prime I doubt that has anything to do with your issue.
Before you season the meat take some celery and juice it good in a blender and rub the meat down good with the juice (pulp optional). Season as you like and refrigerate overnight and cook like before.
This may sound strange to you but you may also be pleased with the results. If you can find celery flakes or powder (not celery salt) you could use that instead.

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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby woodenvisions » Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:22 pm

I'm no Brisket expert at all,and I've Never used Post oak.
I'm wondering if you would still have no ring with either Hickory Or Mesquite ?
I know Mesquite is strong, so I've used Hickory before and noticed a difference.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby Swamp Donkeyz BBQ » Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:27 pm

I've had that happen before. I never did figure out what the cause was. I just figured some meats do, and some meats don't. The brisket tasted smokey, but there was no "smoke ring" at all. Just on one brisket out of the four that were on the pit.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby outlaw » Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:50 am

Swamp Donkeyz BBQ wrote:I've had that happen before. I never did figure out what the cause was. I just figured some meats do, and some meats don't. The brisket tasted smokey, but there was no "smoke ring" at all. Just on one brisket out of the four that were on the pit.


That's interesting right there. I have had a couple (not many) briskets over the years that didn't develop a smoke ring using the same wood, smoker, temps, etc but never one out of a multiple brisket cook. They either did, or they didn't. I come from a scientific background and could write a long boring dissertation on this but it has been done many times so here is a link to a guy who breaks it down where it is easy to understand:

https://barbecuebible.com/2014/07/11/sc ... moke-ring/

One other thing I might mention, while I don't usually mop my briskets I always use a water pan and 9 times out of 10 they will have a strong smoke ring. I do mop PB's and they always have a smoke ring. When I do anything on the egg it will always have a water pan as well.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby k.a.m. » Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:59 am

How long between seasoning and on the cooker?
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby Txdragon » Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:55 am

Papa Tom wrote:OK here is a solution, although I have never done Wagu or even prime I doubt that has anything to do with your issue.
Before you season the meat take some celery and juice it good in a blender and rub the meat down good with the juice (pulp optional). Season as you like and refrigerate overnight and cook like before.
This may sound strange to you but you may also be pleased with the results. If you can find celery flakes or powder (not celery salt) you could use that instead.

Now another of my secrets is revealed guard it closely.


^^ PT has the work around. Celery juice converts to a natural nitrate and in effect, gives the same pink coloring as cure salt. This is a fantastic solution for use on smokers that don't really produce a smoke ring.

It's already been mentioned but the colder, the better. Is it so all the time? Not particularly. The most recent pork butt I did was rubbed and spent the night in my oven. It was certainly around room temps when I put it on the smoker and it got a pretty good ring.
I have noticed though that beef is finicky about it more than others.

My honest pinpoint theory is that it is more in the wood than anything else. Just the same goes for wood as it does meat; no 2 pieces should be expected to behave the same. If you cut the tree and logs yourself, you may see some consistency with all you use from that tree. If you're getting it from a supplier, it's 50/50. This is something I've noticed more than once in the past.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby Swamp Donkeyz BBQ » Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:27 am

outlaw wrote:
Swamp Donkeyz BBQ wrote:I've had that happen before. I never did figure out what the cause was. I just figured some meats do, and some meats don't. The brisket tasted smokey, but there was no "smoke ring" at all. Just on one brisket out of the four that were on the pit.


That's interesting right there. I have had a couple (not many) briskets over the years that didn't develop a smoke ring using the same wood, smoker, temps, etc but never one out of a multiple brisket cook. They either did, or they didn't. I come from a scientific background and could write a long boring dissertation on this but it has been done many times so here is a link to a guy who breaks it down where it is easy to understand:

https://barbecuebible.com/2014/07/11/sc ... moke-ring/

One other thing I might mention, while I don't usually mop my briskets I always use a water pan and 9 times out of 10 they will have a strong smoke ring. I do mop PB's and they always have a smoke ring. When I do anything on the egg it will always have a water pan as well.


I'm a firm believer that a water pan most definitely helps with the development of a "smoke ring". Especially in my pellet pooper.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby Ranchertx » Mon Jan 08, 2018 2:47 pm

I have had issues with losing the smoke ring at times, and I am convinced it has more to do with the wood you are suing, not having enough moisture in it. I used charcoal and bag hickory for a few cooks and got almost NO ring, I quit using kiln dried wood and my ring came right back.
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Re: Help! I've lost my smoke ring!

Postby Swamp Donkeyz BBQ » Mon Jan 08, 2018 3:27 pm

Ranchertx wrote:I have had issues with losing the smoke ring at times, and I am convinced it has more to do with the wood you are suing, not having enough moisture in it. I used charcoal and bag hickory for a few cooks and got almost NO ring, I quit using kiln dried wood and my ring came right back.


I'm not sure if that's always the case. This brisket was cooked in a drum on KBB and a few chunks of kiln dried oak.
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