Choice of wood.

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by ltslewis, Aug 18, 2009.

  1. I have a smoke coming up on August 30th for the football game that night.(Go Broncos) So I wanted to ask a couple questions on wood choices.

    I am kinda still deciding if I should go with pork ribs or chicken wings so I wanted to get some opinions on what to smoke either/or with.

    Atm I have on hand Mesquite, Cherry, Apple, Apricot, Plum, and Peach wood but have access to Hickory and Alder. So I am hoping someone could give me there insight or personal opinions on which of these woods they prefer or if they have a mix that they have tried and just get some all around feedback.

    Have done Chicken with apple and the ribs before with mesquite and loved the chicken but the pork was a little strong for me.

    I have read the wood sticky but really wanted to just get people personal ideas and maybe a few mixes of the woods that might turn out well.
  2. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    On the ribs, try a combo of mesquite and cherry. For the wings, try hickory and apple. I agree that mesquite alone can get strong when used on the heavy side. It's all good my friend.
  3. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I personally use Hickory or Mesquite on everything. Now that I have a Bradley I am going to try other woods...
  4. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    First smoke I ever did was with mesquite, not only did I overdue it but I found that even when burning mesquite I don't care for it at all so I gave what I had away.
    After that I used nothing but hickory and that was mostly because hickory were the only chunks I could buy besides mesquite and even with chips the only other option was apple so I used hickory a lot, and I do love it.

    Recently I found a place with many woods and have been able to try out apple, cherry, oak and have peach but haven't used it yet.
    I now use oak on most things due to its long burn and high heat abilities and add other woods to that for flavor. Hickory I love on beef, especially long smokes.
    Apple I would add with ribs or chicken because apple pairs really well with most pork or poultry dishes.
    With wings especially I would try to avoid too much of a "heavier" smoke wood such as mesquite or even hickory.
    I haven't really found that cherry imparts as much of a flavor as I would like in many smokes since it is so light so I wouldn't suggest it if doing a shorter smoke like wings, but on ribs it would work.
    I suppose a nice mix on ribs would be some cherry with a touch of hickory or on wings a nice 50/50 mix of cherry and apple.
    Let us know what you decide and how everything turns out.
    Also, why not throw a fattie or two or five on and impress everyone with its goodness?
  5. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    The availability of Hickory around here is great, I have a friend who burns a lot of wood during the winter and I get it free.

    His brother has an apple orchard which he is taking out and when he does, I am also going to try to have him stock me up with that for free... [​IMG]
  6. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I fine myself in the same delemma that you have. Too many choices when it comes to wood we have about 10-12 differant woods a hand. I have about 6 on hand right now. As far as your smoke I really like apple and alder the smoother woods I have used hickory but I like it with bacon. I'm leaning to the less smokey woods if you know what I mean but it's a personally perferrance.
    To many woods
  7. uncle_lar

    uncle_lar Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    my personal opinion is that I like to use Hickory on pork, ribs, sausage etc.
    sometimes on ribs I put in a touch of mesquite. I dont ever use all mesquite as I think it is too strong by itself.
    I love cherry wood for doing briskets and pastrami and will mix in a little hickory sometimes. I use almost all apple wood when I do chicken or turkey including wings.
    its all a mater of prefference and trial. once you find something you like you will most likely stick with it.
    it is also a mater of what is available. I would love to try pecan sometime, but there just aren't any pecan trees in north central illinois!
  8. I agree hickory for pork or if you have it pecan slightly milder than hickory.

  9. coffee_junkie

    coffee_junkie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I would do an apple alder mixture if you are going to smoke them all in the same day. Apple is my favorite on pork and chicken. Also pecan is a very nice flavor.
  10. chisoxjim

    chisoxjim Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I do hickory, or a mix of hickory and apple on pretty much everything.
  11. smoking gun

    smoking gun Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Oak and hickory are the most plentiful for me and I smoke most everything with hickory. When I do get apple I love the sweet smokey taste it gives to pork so on butts, loins and especially on Canadian Bacon I'll usually use the apple with a little bit of hickory mixed in. I've been using Cherry a lot more lately and use that mostly on chicken and ribs. For Brisket or chuckies I usually use the mesquite and hickory mix.
    Everyone's taste is different. Experiment with what you have and you'll find whats best for you.

    Good luck and good smokes. [​IMG]
  12. bigtrain74

    bigtrain74 Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Go Broncos!!!!!!
  13. Thanks for all the replies. Looking like i will have to pick up some Hickory and try a Apple/Hickory mix. Will also have to begin a search for Pecan also.

    Tried Cherry last week on some steaks we smoked for Fajitas and the wife just loved the milder taste on those so figure Pecan/Alder would fit to her liking from what I am reading.

    Now to just get that smoke posted since it was a rather good one [​IMG].

    Side note BigTrain74 what did you think of the first preseason game?
  14. bigtrain74

    bigtrain74 Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am very hopeful about this upcoming season... I do not think Orton can give them to a winning season... As for the first preseason game, I am not happy. I am going to miss Cutler, but let's see how he does in Chicago... So far no one is truly pleased with him.

    What do you think of Orton???
  15. I am really hoping Orton gets his head on straight. Just does not seem to be in the game and lets the boos get to him. But I was impressed with Simms in the second half. He never was a bad Quarter Back for Tampa just Tampa never had much out side of a great defense so would like to see how well he can do with are great offensive line and some good receivers. Over all I am one of the hopefulls thinking we can have a winning season. Something Cutler never did.

    And I was never a fan of Cutler and spent more time over those couple years cussing him then praising. So to me it is good riddens.
  16. biskitman

    biskitman Newbie

    I use a mix of oak and hickory with ribs and boston butts. Turns out great! Of course you should not trap the smoke in the smoker and let it travel through the vents freely as to just kiss the meat. Too much smoke is too much flavor. If the smoke smells really strong, it will taste really strong. Use your nose, the meat tastes like the smell.
  17. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I smoke everything with red oak and cherry. I find it to be a real nice, light flavor and goes well with all meats..
  18. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Lets see a Broncos Fan?
    Might want to Try douglas fir or loblolly pine.
    JK, Don't use any conifers for smoking.

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