New MES Bluetooth Digital smoker

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by parrot-head, Nov 7, 2014.

  1. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I'm very glad the AMNPS is working out nicely for you, Dennis. Todd sells the JD pellets in 1lb bags and he's running a sale on them now. I've already got bags and bags of his wood pellets, though, so when I'm ready to order next I'll include the JD pellets.
  2. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    Rick, I have JD Pellets coming from Todd today along with some Hickory, Mesquite, Oak, Peach, Cherry, Apple, and Pecan from Todd also in addition to his 5 x 8 tray for the Pellets.

    There is supposed to be included free of charge, 2# of the Pitmaster's Choice Pellets that comes with ordering the 5 x 8 tray. Those Pellets sound interesting.
  3. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    For a while all I was using were the PC pellets since Todd includes them with every order of his AMNPS and I hadn't bought any other pellets yet. It is indeed a very nice blend. I've used them less since I amassed my stock of different wood flavors but sometimes I'll use it in combo with another type of pellet or when I want to add a cherry flavor to what I'm smoking.

    I went to Todd's page and noticed that the JD pellets are in his grilling pellets collection. I sent him a PM asking what's the difference between his grilling pellets and his BBQ pellets.
  4. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    The grilling pellets are not his brand. He sells Bourbon Barrel pellets under his brand that are great.
  5. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    Well I don't see the Bourbon Barrel listed anymore. I'm not sure if it is a temporary thing or if he isn't carrying them anymore.
  6. dr k

    dr k Master of the Pit

    His standard and specialty BBQ pellets are his he gets in bulk from different places around the country.  The BBQ'RS Delight one pound bags are also 100% the name of the wood on the bag I found locally as well and is good.  His garlic spice and other spice pellets are in a White Oak wood to make the pellet.  The 20lb. bag of Hickory pellets he sent me were unmarked in a thin plastic bag without a name that I put in a pale since it easily rips.  Lifting it out of the box the bag just fell apart.  It looks better in a pale anyway.  

  7. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks. I guess he found it cheaper to re-sell the JD pellets which made the bourbon barrel pellets redundant. But I know virtually nothing about where Todd sources his wood pellets. It was enough to know they're 100% wood and high quality.
  8. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    All the pellets I buy from him are in his plastic bags. With the older ones he used to write the wood type and weight on the bag with a Sharpie. Now he just slaps on a label and checks off the wood type and the weight. I've yet to have a bag tear. I keep the bags in the boxes they were shipped in along with the included list of what I bought. That way, once I find the box, I can easily see what bags of pellets I have in there.

    Guys talk about the need to nuke wood pellets before putting them in the AMNPS. I had Pitmaster's Choice in a torn bag exposed to whatever the temperature and humidity was inside my garage for about 2 years before I used it up. I never had a problem lighting them up in the pellet smoker--and it can get pretty damp and humid here in Washington state.

    As I wrote to bmaddox, I don't really know anything about where Todd sources his wood pellets because it wasn't important to me. I've learned since then, as you wrote, he uses white oak in some of his specialty pellets and red oak in his regular oak pellets. I don't know if he makes his own regular pellets or subcontracts them out. I don't know who he buys already-made pellets from. I buy from Todd because he's a great guy and the wood pellets are superb, wherever they were sourced.

    But I still haven't learned yet the difference between BBQ and grilling pellets. I know that Traeger uses standard wood pellets in their smoker/grills.
  9. dr k

    dr k Master of the Pit

    If anything nuking them for a minute or two makes the kitchen smell good.  All food smoking pellets usually say made with 100% hardwoods but not necessarily the flavor of wood on the bag.  That's why sticking with Todd is recommend  I called Traeger and they use 2/3 White Oak or Alder depending if it's made on the east or west coast for hot/clean burning/low ash heat and 1/3 the wood flavor on the bag.  Same with BBQ'RS Delight in their 20lb.bags.  Some call it Fuel and Flavor.  The 1lb BBQ'RS Delight  bags say it's 100% wood on the bag. 

  10. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I can tell you're the go-to guy for wood pellet info, Kurt. And now, how about an opinion? I took a BBQ class last year and the instructor swore that if he gave us a blind tasting of meats cooked over different wood pellets, we couldn't tell the difference between oak or hickory or whatever wood was used to smoke the meats. He said it's why it doesn't matter which wood pellet you use.

    What do you think? Do you think we could even smell which meat was cooked over which wood pellet, let alone taste the difference?

    I'm not convinced he was right but I'm not sure if I could tell the difference either.

    Oh, our kitchen already smells good. The wife and I are fabulous cooks![​IMG]

  11. dr k

    dr k Master of the Pit

    The instructor is probably right.  Mesquite and Walnut being stronger, most hardwoods being medium and fruit woods being mild.  Tasting the strong, medium and mid woods vs. the specific specie is probably my limit other than seeing food smoked with Cherry and the Mahogany color.  I've been using Pecan.  It's said to be medium like Hickory but a little nutty.  With the AMNPS and AMNTS, with 100% the flavor of wood pellets from Todd, is probably the best way to train your palate.  Everything is perfectly measurable.  I prefer a super light smoke then figure how long to take it to get the flavor I like.  I found a steel washer in the picture below that fits perfectly in the open cap of my tube smoker and is held in place when sliding the tube smoker into the cap.  I can just put in one and a quarter cups of pellets and shake to level it the length of the smoker.  Kind of like the lighting hole in the AMNPS.  I still have to test the set up shown with the 9"x13" foil pan cut in half.  I wanted a drip deflector over the AMNTS that would catch the smoke and diffuse it up the left wall instead of a stream of smoke hitting meat.  The other half is on the right side to kick a little heat to the center of the smoker.  [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

  12. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I used pecan pellets once but mixed it with apple wood chips since I hadn't bought the pellets from Todd at that time. I couldn't tell the difference but then I eat very, very fast.
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2015
  13. Rick,
    I have often wondered if you can really identify the different pellet flavors if you were blindfolded. I have the "perfect mix", hickory, apple, pit asters choice, etc.etc., and I guess I'm not that much of an expert to tell the difference. But...I keep experimenting based on the various recommends.
  14. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    I did some ribs on mine over the weekend.  The taste/texture needs improvement but I really love this smoker.  I over analyze everything and will report back on all my findings.  I just have had zero time to record the info and share it with you guys.  I have family visiting and it's chaos.  Plus we are having a 40+ person party on Saturday. 

    One question though RE: cleaning.  What are the "must clean" items after every smoke?  I saw a probe sticking out from the back plate, I cleaned that.  There was also a button top battery looking part.  I cleaned that too.  The rest I basically left because I couldnt get the residue off (the chip plate cover had drippings on and they were rock solid, even while still warm).  I just left it.

    Looking forward to starting my butt tonight. 
  15. That's why I foil the chip plate cover and bottom of the smoker. I think the only things you Should clean after every smoke is the glass window ( if you have one ), and the seal. And of course, the grill racks and probe.
  16. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    One data point.  It was 78F ambient temp.  I ran my smoker at 275F for 3 hours and then at 225F for 5.5 hours (and I assume another ~30min at start-up to get from zero to get to 275F).  So let's say it ran for 9 hours, and I pulled 2.71 KwH to do it, which cost 68c in electricity.  My next 9 hour smoke wont pull as many KwH either because I dont have to season it. 

    In short, the cost of electricity to run a MES is immaterial.
  17. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    Whats the seal?  Grill racks all went into the dishwasher, easy as pie.  I'm back at work so cant take a pic but I want to make sure I know what the probe is (short metal piece sticking out, 0.5 inches?, rounded tip?).  What is that button top piece?  I have the Cabelas unit so no window, which is great. 
  18. dr k

    dr k Master of the Pit

    The expanding foam insulation and no window on yours really kicks up the efficiency.

  19. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    I would be curious to hear how others perform.  You can get a Kill-A-Watt meter for free from your local library.  Try it out and report back!
  20. The "seal" is the door gasket that runs around the periphery of the door. MB recommends that it be cleaned after every use. I simply make it part of the window cleaning with Easy Off No Fume. Spray on and wipe off with paper towels. I make a quick water/vinegar wipedown after the Easy Off cleanup.

    Five String

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