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Greetings from Brooklyn

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    Greetings from Brooklyn

    Hey everyone, i just wanted to introduce myself. My name is mike rosenthal and amazingribs.com has been my go-to source of information for years now. Im thrilled that i can finally contribute to the site in a small way and help ensure it will stick around for years to come!

    I grew up in durham north carolina, so most of my early experience with bbq is from that tradition. but ive lived in nyc for the last 10 years and finally acquired my own outdoor space only a few years ago and really started delving into smoking and grilling in a serious way at that time. since space is such a premium here, i was really grateful to discover this site that has so much detailed explanation of smoking on a weber 22" grill. ive resisted adding a standalone smoker to my setup so far, though i did finally break down and get a cajun bandit stacker this year. that (and learning the minion method) has really taken my smoking technique to new levels, but im grateful for the years i struggled with getting a reliable low smoking heat on just the weber grill. good times!

    im actually in the midst of preparing for my 3rd annual pig roast this weekend up in the catskill mountains. the last two years ive done a 90lb hog in the standard cinderblock pit (step by step instructions from this website were absolutely crucial to the success) with a variety of sauces (also all recipes i found here). this weekend we have less people at a different location and so instead of hauling 1,600lb of cinderbocks up an unmaintained mountain road, we are going to attempt a manual rotisserie technique. its a smaller pig (60lb) so im hoping we can affix it to the pole, get that up above some indirect heat, and just turn it by hand for 6-7hrs. If anyone has experience with this setup, i'd love to hear about it.

    and if anyone ever wants to know about any of the manhattan/brooklyn bbq joints that seem to be springing up on a weekly basis these days, im happy to offer my opinion! theres actually some quite decent spots around lately...


    Great to meet you Mike, and thanks for the support! Sounds like a great tradition you have there with roasting hogs in the Catskills, cool! I've never hand roasted one, so I can't offer any help with that. I imagine the satisfaction that would come from pulling it off successfully would be like no other.

    Mike when you get a minute, check out Pit Boss' Welcome & Announcement channel on the main page, as well as the Forum Tips post and the Pictures post there too. These will all help you learn the ropes here and help you fill out your signature, and learn the best way to post pics here.

    Glad to have you aboard and look forward to your interaction here. Sounds like you live only a couple hrs away from Pit Boss Dave.


      Hi Mike, and Welcome! Please document the up coming event with pics and tell us the story and how it went. The coming event really sounds great. I have no experience in doing whole hogs except for one time in Hawaii I helped do a pig in the ground. Most of my help was the slave labor carring rocks and cutting leaves. Anyway Welcome.



        Welcome Mike! Do post some of your pics, would love to see the setup!


          Welcome, personally I would dig a pit down about 2-3 feet deep and roast above that, that way all of your heat goes up into the meat, not radiating out all over the place. This should keep the wood going longer, you just need to lift it up if you want to put more in.
          Hawaiians use rocks, you can look into Imu, they put a bunch of rocks on top of the fire (careful not to get exploding ones) which help regulate the temperature and keep the heat going for a loooong time.


          • _John_
            _John_ commented
            Editing a comment
            Oh and a Pit Barrel Cooker will fit around there somewhere just fine...

          Thanks for that suggestion john. We are certainly going to try to get down into the earth a bit, but it is *super* rocky up there once you get digging, so we are a little concerned with our ability to get a sizable hole without hitting something large and immovable. I'll definitely post a report on monday with pictures.



            Originally posted by mikerosenthal View Post
            but it is *super* rocky up there once you get digging
            D'oh! I guess a mountain would tend to be a little rocky...


              Welcome Mike! Like everyone else said, we want pics of that pig roast!


                thanks for the warm greetings everyone!
                well, we did the manual rotisserie this weekend up in the catskills. overall it went pretty well. the community experience is MUCH better with this technique (vs a closed cinderblock pit) since everyone can see the pig the whole time and engage with the process / see the pig transform over time, etc. So from that perspective, it was a total success.

                As for the pig itself, the results were middling. Like most of us, im pretty loyal to the thermometer, and not having a constant, accurate reading of the surface temperature felt a bit like driving blind. We had coals in a ring around the pig for 9 hours for this 60 pounder, but ultimately our fire wasn't hot enough. We eventually got up to 165 internal temp, several hours after we had planned to be eating. So rather than bring it up to the 200 i was aiming for, we called it done. the results were completely tasty roast pork, but obviously not that transplendent, pullable goodness i was aiming for, so a bit of a disappointment for me personally.

                Next year we'll just run the fire hotter the entire time and we should be able to hit our mark no problem. Like i said, i think the experience for everyone is a lot more engaging with this technique (and certainly a lot less cinderblock hauling is required) so im keen to nail it. And the weather was gorgeous, the beer was cold, the sides were amazing, and the company was first rate. So who am i to complain.



                • Jon Solberg
                  Jon Solberg commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Very cool Mike. WTG

                • A Fid
                  A Fid commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Way cool! Welcome to the Pit Mike.

                • David Parrish
                  David Parrish commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Thanks for the pics=)


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