Sunday, January 15, 2012

BBQ Safe and BBQ Vault by Pitmaker

I found these on YouTube tonight. The first is a BBQ Safe by Pitmaker

The second is a is a BBQ Vault also by Pitmaker.

The BBQ Vault is very similar to my McCullough.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Union Woodshop - Clarkston, Michigan

Traditional signage is rare on mainstreet in the 2000's
We took a short drive to Clarkston, Michigan yesterday to eat at Union Woodshop, at 18 South Main Street. This bbq restaurant was recently featured on Diner's, Drive-in's and Dives on Food Network in an episode featuring Kid Rock, a Michigan native.

We arrived at 1 p.m. hoping to avoid a large lunch crowd, but due to the popularity of Guy Fieri and Kid Rock a lot of people must have had the same idea. We ended up waiting 40 minutes for a seat and met some nice people while waiting (standing room only) including a friendly couple who drove up from Toledo, OH. They made a day trip to the Detroit area for a motorcycle show in Novi (she is employed by Harley-Davidson), to eat some bbq, and then drive to Michigan Brewing Company in Webberville, which happens to be the brewer of Kid Rock's Badass Beer.  If you want to try the beer, here's a list of distributors:  AmericanBadassBeer

I'll admit right up front that I missed the original episode on Food Network, but I hope to check it out soon in re-runs. I'll keep looking for a clip of the show to add here, but until I locate one I've added some pictures of the restaurant and menu items below.

When I check out a barbecue restaurant for the first time, I almost always order beef brisket if it's on the menu. It's been my experience that the quickest way to judge the overall ability of the pitmaster is whether he or she can cook brisket well.  Linda usually gets pulled pork because she's a Tennessean and she loves traditional pork bbq.  Union Woodshop Menu

Linda had the Shop Burrito (black beans & spinach in a flour tortilla topped cheese, stuffed with a choice of pulled pork, smoked chicken, or smoked shrimp) and I had the Beef Brisket with sides of collard greens and barbecue baked beans. 

Union Woodshop beef brisket, baked beans, and collard greens

Union Woodshop Shop Burrito

Drinks are served on these unique beverage coasters

And if you're like me and are cautiously suspicious about bbq restaurants who profess to be the real deal, but who don't actually cook the bbq over wood flame the way it's meant to be cooked, here's a picture of the Southern Pride pit behind the restaurant.

Southern Pride smoker behind the restaurant
Even if you are not into barbecue, Clarkston's mainstreet is worth a look.  It's on the National Register of Historic Places. The area is known for several fine examples of Queen Anne-style homes and the mainstreet is very pedestrian friendly.