Out of BBQ. See you Monday

Wiley and I hate to get the call. It happened again Saturday night. “Hey, Boss…we’re out of pork and the brisket, chicken and ribs are next.” OK…make sure all customers who are seated get what they want…errr….what we can give them and then put the sign on the door.

Why can’t we have enough? Well, it is simple and it isn’t. When we opened our little joint we swore to each other and the BBQ gods that we would never serve day old ribs, chicken, pork and brisket. It has taken quite a bit to achieve that feat.

So Friday night rolls around and the pit boss has to determine how many pork butts and brisket packers to put on for the overnight cook. Is it time for the swami to make a guess? Sort of. An educated guess. How many did we put on and use last Saturday lunch and supper? Has this week been busier? Any special orders going out? Oh, dear. What if I am wrong? It is like taking a bunch of darts, putting a blindfold on, being twirled around three times and tossing them all to the BBQ dart board.

An “educated” guess is made and those hunks of meat are prepped, seasoned and placed lovingly on the pit, so they can rotate all night long while being caressed by wafts of pecan wood.

Saturday rolls around and those pieces of deliciousness are pulled off at the prime internal temperature, double wrapped in foil and placed in a warming cabinet ready to make lots of customers happy.

Next, with the same amount of forethought, ribs and chicken are prepped for their turn on the pit. How many? Hope we got it right. Luckily, ribs and chicken can be smoked twice a day….but still…it is hard to plan.

Calls come in…”I need 6 slabs of ribs, 5 pounds of pork, 5 pounds of brisket and 10 chickens.” Say what? Sometimes we feel we can accommodate, and other times we have to give the painful answer, “Sorry, we don’t have enough to give you. Wish you had called yesterday to pre-order.”