So yesterday, on a lovely Sunday morning, I was at the local market and spotted what I thought was a nice looking slab of St Louis Spare Ribs. I purchased 2.5 pounds ($15 total) and took it home for a rub down. I found a simple but effective looking rub on this site, coated it pretty thoroughly and got it in the fridge for about 4 hours (then went to IKEA and spent way too much money). I wasn’t able to get the smoker (I have the Char-Grill Silver smoker) up and running till 5:50pm, so I knew I would be tight on time because I wanted to test the 3-2-1 method. I figured I would have to modify it somehow which ended up becoming 2-1.5-1.5. I got the temps consistent at 225° using royal oak charcoal and mesquite wood chunks. I smoked them uncovered with just the rub on them for 2 hours, then took them out and wrapped them in foil. I didn’t have any of that bottled butter spread or apple juice, so I melted some butter and minced some garlic in as a substitute. I also added ¼ cup of beer, so it was a buttery garlic beer concoction that I added to the foil. I really have no clue if that is an acceptable substitute or what impact that had on the flavor of the ribs, let me know what you think about using real butter and beer. I wrapped that up tight in the foil and got it in for another 1.5 hours. Took it out, unwrapped it from the foil and coated it in homemade BBQ sauce…then put it back in for the last 1.5 hours. At the 5 hour mark I took the ribs out and I could tell the minute I picked them up with the tongs that they were not anywhere near being tender, they wobbled around like rubber actually. I cut into them and it was just so thick and rubbery, getting to the good pieces of meat was a challenge. The flavor was great but the texture was just too tough and chewy….I tossed half of the ribs and hung my head in shame. I really have no idea what went wrong, I cooked them at 225° the entire 5 hours and on the right side of the smoker away from the firebox. Multiple thermometers confirmed the temps which remained very consistent throughout. I’m trying to determine if I undercook them by only smoking for 5 hours? How much of a difference could that extra hour have really had? Was it the untraditional 2-1.5-1.5 method that did me in? Just trying to figure out what contributed to the meat being so tough and chewy and what I can do next time to get them falling off the bone. Is it possible I just bought a bad rack, when I got them home there was a lot of fat on them and the bones were not straight but instead curved at an angle through the meat. Also there were small bones or tendons or something going lengthwise through half of the meat, perpendicular to the main rib bones which made it very difficult to cut and eat. Any help/suggestions are appreciated!