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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 07-17-2013, 10:29 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frognot View Post
I think that a lotta "bad" places exist because lots of people won't pay the price for "good" BBQ. Good BBQ is time & labor extensive and lots of folks expect fast food prices for everything nowadays.
You are so right! I had someone come to me to cater a party for about 50 people. This person had my BBQ while attending another event I did. When I gave them the quote for the event which was discounted because I knew them, I never heard from them again until I accidentally bumped into them while I was out. Of course they apologized for not getting back with me, and said they opted for a pitch-in party instead. This person thought I was going to do all that work for the cost of product plus some chump-change. Sorry, but I refuse to put all my labor of love and passion into quality BBQ and sides and get nothing in return.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 11:20 AM   #32
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Tony, i have seen vendors at one of the county fairs here in California putting about 40 racks of ribs in a smoker with zero rub or spices on the ribs! What amazed me even more was that they had huge lines of people buying their product. We don't have very many good bbq joints out here in Cali.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 11:37 AM   #33
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I recently stopped by this guys place and gave him a lesson on BBQ


haha, joking...but I did stop by and had some awesome bbq and got to talk to Aaron Franklin for a few minutes about brisket selection.

I have only really eaten at a handful of bbq places since I started cooking Que and one place I stopped at cooked with mesquite and had some tough brisket..so this is really the only brisket I can compare my que to..

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Unread 07-17-2013, 11:43 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billdanc View Post
Tony, i have seen vendors at one of the county fairs here in California putting about 40 racks of ribs in a smoker with zero rub or spices on the ribs! What amazed me even more was that they had huge lines of people buying their product. We don't have very many good bbq joints out here in Cali.
Wow! But, I have seen the same thing here in Indy. It's amazing how people will pour their money into mediocre food. I'm not falling into trap.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 02:53 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frognot View Post
I think that a lotta "bad" places exist because lots of people won't pay the price for "good" BBQ. Good BBQ is time & labor extensive and lots of folks expect fast food prices for everything nowadays.
I agree. This is problematic. As well, portion control is nonexistent these days. People want a ton of food for not much money. Only one way to get that. And everyone has gotten so used to it that if you don't have a giant plate of food in front of you it is perceived as a rip off, even though you are just eating a bunch of cheap food. Some bbq joints (not naming names) will give you a ton of fries with your meal, because fries are cheap as cheap can be and they fill you up. So the perception is that you got a good bang for your buck, when in reality you just ate a bunch of crap.

Perhaps if the public perception was that good bbq does not equate to fast food in taste/value/price the "bad" places would be weeded out. There is always a line for a block at places like OK Joes and Franklins, so we know this is possible.

Still, best bbq in town is in your own backyard. Can't beat the price of the food and beer, atmosphere is great, and the taste is killer.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 03:32 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thunter View Post
No problem at all! There are a couple of good joints in Indy, two are chains and one is a local guy who cooks on about 8 Weber Ranch Kettles, his stuff is amazing and never compromises on process and quality. That would be Judges BBQ if you ever get to Indy.

Care to mention any of the names of the good places? I'd like to check some of them out sometime.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 03:35 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by nthole View Post
IU grad here. I don't think I ever ate bbq anywhere in the state of Indiana!

You ever see the guy that pulls a smoker up to the parking lot of a little store? I'm blanking on his name or the store but it seems to be a pretty big deal. Its close to the stadium though.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 04:22 PM   #38
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I had to work the carnival a couple times during the 4th of July week this year and everyone was raving about the pulled pork sandwich for sale. I asked the vendor if they were smoked and all he would say was it was cooked off site. Well it was horrible but at least it was only $3.00 and I was hungry
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Unread 07-17-2013, 10:27 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQPitt View Post
This is not meant in any way for you specifically, as I've heard others sing your praises, but your statement brings up an interesting point I think. How did so many BBQ joints become so average? I have a hard time believing that people got into the Q business without thinking their BBQ was really really good.

I guess I wonder if it becomes a problem of scale. Can people just not handle the sheer volume of the cooks and keep quality? Do they start off high then slowly sink due to apathy?

It just seems like this is a common theme but I can't believe so many people would gamble so much with only average product. I can understand it from some of the chains. There mission is to appeal to as many people as they can while offending absolutely nobody. But mom and pop joints see, to fall by the wayside just as much.
Honestly, I think some start average and fall from their. The restaurant business is a tough business to start with and add to that trying to cook the most difficult way possible. Everyone thinks it is easy to run a restaurant and that anyone can do it. If you are not willing to sell your soul to your business you will not succeed. I know what good BBQ is supposed to taste like and that is what I try to put out every day. One problem I have is that not everyone shares my passion. I would like to train someone else to cook meat at my place, but I don't feel any one understand how BBQ has to be cooked. They are all about time and temp and none of them have that much of a culinary background.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawg Father of Seoul View Post
It's an every restaurant thing. A few people tell them how good they are. They cut a few corners and people are still saying good things. It does not take many years to start sucking. It's just easier.

Even sooner if you start subpar.
This is why most restaurants fail. People won't tell you the truth to your face. Give them an anonymous place to tell the truth and they will. Everything I do is a reflection on me. I am lucky I do have people around me that will let me know if something is not up to our usual standards. I am not there every hour we are open and this may be a source of cutting corners for places that are not fully staffed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by frognot View Post
I think that a lotta "bad" places exist because lots of people won't pay the price for "good" BBQ. Good BBQ is time & labor extensive and lots of folks expect fast food prices for everything nowadays.
I think a lot of the bad places over charge for their fare. We have a place near us that is an institution and has been around for years. They do not produce the best BBQ but they charge like they do. People are in the habit of going there for BBQ. Hell I worked there for a while 20 years ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thunter View Post
I think the answer to your question is tied to one word that makes all the difference... Passion!

If you are going into BBQ ONLY because you think you can make some money, then passion for quality is not the highest priority, volume is! The focus becomes how can I get as much money as I can get with as little investment of time and money as possible. This is the formula for average and pitiful BBQ. Also, I question BBQ joints who also "specialize" in other products like seafood for example. Are you a BBQ joint for a fish house? This is not to say that you can't sell other products, but those "other" products should be some sort of periodic special in my opinion, and not a main product. If you are a fish house, sell fish. If you are a BBQ joint, sell BBQ. This is also the reason for mediocre BBQ, the focus is not on the BBQ product, but also on the fish, the chili, and whatever else you are trying to make money with.

Conversely, if you are passionate about BBQ, your product, your process, and the satisfaction of your customers are whats important. This implies a totally different approach to business and product preparation. There won't be any compromises to process or customer service because you feel your personal reputation is tied to every bite of BBQ your customers take. This is what makes the difference in my opinion. No cutting of corners, not compromise on meat quality, immaculate food preparation and serving environments, and ZERO tolerance for poor customer service.
What I find funny is that when people come into my place they look at the menu and are surprised that I only have BBQ. I do have a few salads and a grilled cheese sandwich. I am not trying to reinvent the wheel. I am trying to produce the best BBQ I know how too. People have been conditioned to expect to get anything they want. I don't believe that the customer is always right. I will accommodate them as much as possible. What bugs me is they come into the restaurant and want to change my recipes, they want french fries, they think they know how to run a restaurant.

Thanks to all that have commented. I know most of these comment were not directed at me, but reading them here makes me aware of things I need to look for.
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Unread 07-17-2013, 11:35 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pyle's BBQ View Post


What I find funny is that when people come into my place they look at the menu and are surprised that I only have BBQ. I do have a few salads and a grilled cheese sandwich. I am not trying to reinvent the wheel. I am trying to produce the best BBQ I know how too. People have been conditioned to expect to get anything they want. I don't believe that the customer is always right. I will accommodate them as much as possible. What bugs me is they come into the restaurant and want to change my recipes, they want french fries, they think they know how to run a restaurant.

Thanks to all that have commented. I know most of these comment were not directed at me, but reading them here makes me aware of things I need to look for.
I ALMOST went to manage a BBQ restaurant one time. Historic place that they had just spent some money upgrading. Took one look at the menu and got sick to my stomach. The menu was HUGE. Burgers, chicken fried steak, pot roast, and twenty different other things.

Ruined my day. Had to break the news that a new menu was warranted, then they looked sick. They had added all these things trying to be every thing to everybody and ended up being mediocre. I can be mediocre any where. No need to work long hours for that.
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Unread 07-18-2013, 01:22 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pyle's BBQ View Post
Honestly, I think some start average and fall from their. The restaurant business is a tough business to start with and add to that trying to cook the most difficult way possible. Everyone thinks it is easy to run a restaurant and that anyone can do it. If you are not willing to sell your soul to your business you will not succeed. I know what good BBQ is supposed to taste like and that is what I try to put out every day. One problem I have is that not everyone shares my passion. I would like to train someone else to cook meat at my place, but I don't feel any one understand how BBQ has to be cooked. They are all about time and temp and none of them have that much of a culinary background.



This is why most restaurants fail. People won't tell you the truth to your face. Give them an anonymous place to tell the truth and they will. Everything I do is a reflection on me. I am lucky I do have people around me that will let me know if something is not up to our usual standards. I am not there every hour we are open and this may be a source of cutting corners for places that are not fully staffed.



I think a lot of the bad places over charge for their fare. We have a place near us that is an institution and has been around for years. They do not produce the best BBQ but they charge like they do. People are in the habit of going there for BBQ. Hell I worked there for a while 20 years ago.



What I find funny is that when people come into my place they look at the menu and are surprised that I only have BBQ. I do have a few salads and a grilled cheese sandwich. I am not trying to reinvent the wheel. I am trying to produce the best BBQ I know how too. People have been conditioned to expect to get anything they want. I don't believe that the customer is always right. I will accommodate them as much as possible. What bugs me is they come into the restaurant and want to change my recipes, they want french fries, they think they know how to run a restaurant.

Thanks to all that have commented. I know most of these comment were not directed at me, but reading them here makes me aware of things I need to look for.
Even if they do know how to run A restaurant, that certainly doesn't mean they know how to run YOUR restaurant.
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Unread 07-18-2013, 10:07 AM   #42
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Some very good points made in this thread. I'm not sure I can add anything that hasn't already been covered. But I know in my area there are several BBQ joints that are simply dirt cheap and like many here have said. Our society has gotten so conditioned on getting a lot of something for little of nothing.

If the plate doesn't come with food literally hanging off the side they feel like they are getting ripped off. On the other side of the spectrum I don't like going into a BBQ restaurant and getting an order of sides that after two bites is gone. As a consumer I feel like I am being ripped off.

But overall I think most people in this country haven't eaten enough bbq to know there is a difference between high end bbq and low end bbq. They are so many bbq restaurants out there who skimp on quality that the average person has gotten used to that being "real bbq".
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Unread 07-18-2013, 11:01 AM   #43
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I hear you Tony. After I started really cooking we simply do not eat out anymore, and not just BBQ joints but restaurants in general. The rare occasion that we do end up having to dine out I usually find myself more disappointed than satiated. About the only place we make a point to hit anymore is a local Thai food place which is absolutely killer, and that's the type of food I typically don't cook so it also gives me a night off in the kitchen.
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Unread 07-18-2013, 12:20 PM   #44
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Look for restaurants that run out of bbq on a regular basis, it is going to be the freshest. This means they are not cooking a ton of food Friday to last the rest of the week. I would rather be disappointed they are out, instead of putting out money for bad, or a so so meal.
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Unread 07-18-2013, 01:18 PM   #45
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Look for restaurants that run out of bbq on a regular basis, it is going to be the freshest. This means they are not cooking a ton of food Friday to last the rest of the week. I would rather be disappointed they are out, instead of putting out money for bad, or a so so meal.
Dave
Amen!!!!
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