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HS 50th on the Lake — Diane

I rented a vacation home on Lake Winnipesaukee.  I contacted Smokin Bear BBQ to cater 25 guests, and the food was beyond fabulous!  The meat was perfect, and the confetti pasta salad was to die for!  Thank you so much for making my bbq such a special occasion for my high school friends of 50 years!

Honeymoon Surprise

After one particular beautiful Fall lake side wedding, we received a phone call the very next  morning: 

Caller:  “Hi!  This is the Bride.”

Bear:  “Wow!  We are surprised to hear from you today.  We figured you’d be enjoying your honeymoon right about now.”

Bride:  “Oh, we are heading out soon, but we just wanted to call and say thank you, to you, Bear, and The Pit Crew, Kim, for such a perfect meal for our wedding.  Everyone was so happy and enjoyed all you did for us on our special day!”

Bear:  “It was our pleasure to serve you, your new husband, your family and friends on your wedding day.  Congratulations!”

This is just one more sample of what we would call a blue ribbon trophy for Smokin Bear BBQ!  A bride calling us the very next morning after her wedding day to say thank you.  You can’t beat that!!


We agree with so many that it is hard to beat slow, smoked brisket.  However, people don’t realize how long it takes to make such a perfect piece of smokey goodness.  To achieve brisket bliss, it takes approx. one hour and 15 minutes PER POUND to reach perfectly smoked meaty goodness.  So, with an average size brisket — usually about 15 lbs — that works out to be over 15 hours of cook time.  Let’s put that into action with a back yard party.  We would have to show up around 17 to 18 hours prior to your event to get this party started.  Do you really want to pay for all that time?  We would suggest going with prime rib.  A few more dollars up front, but it saves you tons on the back end.  PLUS, who doesn’t love a nice slab of slow smoked prime rib?

The Smoke Ring

One of the most frequent comments I hear from “newbies” to real slow smoked BBQ is:  “Ohhhh noooo…..this is RAW!! Look how pink it is inside!    Oh, wait….it is cooked in the middle — but not on the outside…”  I  confidently assure people that this is due to the smoke penetrating the meat, causing the pink ring or “smoke ring” to appear around the outside layer of the meat.  This is not raw, this is FLAVOR!!

Use Local Wood for Smoking

Why do I use Sugar Maple, Beechnut and Apple Wood for the unique flavors here at Smokin Bear BBQ?  Mostly because it’s local and readily available.  But, more than that, I find that it gives my NH style BBQ a truly unique sweetness only found here in New England.  There have been many conversations and debates across the BBQ nation about which woods smoke the best and create the best flavor.  The only true answer is:   use what is local.  It’s kind of hard to find a mesquite tree in New Hampshire to cut down!!

Smoked Porkloin

Guinea Pig Party

Another successful guinea pig party on the books here at Smokin Bear BBQ!  What is that you ask?  It is a small gathering where we surprise our guests with new recipes to try out.  We pass out cards for them to write down their comments, suggestions, etc.   Here are just a few:  “Prime Rib – my favorite was the non-injected.  The injected was a tiny bit too hot.”  “Chicken – my favorite one was with seasoning injected, so tasty!” “Prime Rib – incredibly juicy and has the perfect amount of rub.”  “Lamb was surprisingly yet satisfying mellow on *lamb* flavor; so tender and tasty!”  “The chicken — HOLY SHIT!!”  “Phenomenal pasta salad!  Great dressing!”  “The smoked chicken was the moistest, most tender, I have ever had!  Lamb was sweet and tender, similar to the best aged T-bone; the prime rib WONDERFUL–tender, smokiness without being overpowering.”  “I will not comment on the lamb because it is MINE…ALL MINE.”    One of our guest commented “that was the most tender piece of beef I have ever eaten, what cut of beef was that?”    Bear replied, “that was actually slow smoked and lightly rubbed boneless leg of lamb.”  Our  guest was shocked!  “That was lamb??  Not beef!!??”  He complimented Bear on his  skill at serving the best BBQ he had ever had!   …and we are pretty sure he is the one who wrote the mine…all mine comment!!

Home-made Sausage

It’s the middle of Winter here in New Hampshire, and I am working on sausage! The sausages will be made by hand and stuffed in natural casings. The first is a chicken, spinach and feta cheese, made with Perdue boneless chicken thighs. The second is going to be pork with jalapeño and onion, and the third is an all beef with tomato, basil, and plenty of herbs and spices. We use fresh beef and pork from our local favorite PT Farm in Haverhill. Kim grows herbs in the summer, and dries them herself so we use those as well.

These sausages will always be made FRESH ~ never frozen ~ and to order for your New Hampshire BBQ and then, of course, slow smoked over New Hampshire hardwoods. And don’t forget, I can make them Mild or Wild! 

Can’t wait to share these with The Pit Crew! She is going to love these, as I hope all my new and past Smokin Bear BBQ clients will as well!!

Check back in to see how I’m making out!

My Best Trophy

Many people have questioned why I don’t do competition BBQ. I usually just shrug, and say ~ not really interested. I am not in it for the trophies. Here is an explanation and the real reason why. During our Town’s 250th anniversary celebration, a man approached me, after I had served him his NH BBQ chicken and coleslaw plate, and said, “I am 84 years old… been eating chicken my whole life — and that was the best piece of chicken I have ever eaten. How do you get it so juicy and tender?” Thank you, Sir, for the compliment!! I was just given one of the top trophies ever for my BBQ. No shiny piece of plastic with gold highlights can beat this blue ribbon trophy!

Free BBQ Education

During our events, everyone is always very interested in checking out the Smoker, how it works, how long it takes to cook everything, and what type of wood I use — just to name a few. They hang around, sipping their favorite beverages, watching with interest what I am doing, with big smiles on their faces, nostrils flaring, breathing in very deeply. I love the interest, and fully encourage everyone to ask questions while they wait to enjoy the Best BBQ in New Hampshire!