Matt Abdoo and Shane McBride went from haute cuisine to hot barbecue – and never looked back.

The classically trained chefs who had earned accolades at upscale New York restaurants like Del Posto and Balthazar left the world of fine dining and, in 2015, opened Pig Beach BBQ. This casual Brooklyn eatery focused on smoked meats, side dishes, and signature dishes. SThe friends and business associates developed recipes and techniques inspired by, but not tied to, barbecue styles like Texas, Memphis, Kansas City, and the Carolinas. Their style is New York City BBQ, a mix of offerings where taste and creativity trump everything else. sauces.

“The barbecue in New York City is just like New York City; it’s an ever-changing microcosm,” says McBride. “There is no more melting pot than New York City. So that’s our barbecue.”

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Their approach has resulted in a Pig Beach BBQ empire of sorts. They opened a second location in Queens and are planning a third location soon for West Palm Beach in, Florida. They sell signature sauces and spice mixes online and appear on morning shows and food TV. Now they are also authors. “The Pig Beach BBQ Cookbook: Smoked, Grilled, Roasted, and Sauced,” out now, features over 50 recipes, including ribs, brisket, and pulled pork (or, as McBride calls them, “barbecue’s greatest hits”) and cross-border-pushing dishes like beef rib gnocchi and pastrami (pork broth ramen with pastrami).

While Abdoo and McBride had formal culinary training, they had to learn the basics of barbecuing. So they devoted a chapter in the book to the basics of barbecuing to share their well-earned knowledge of smokers, tools, and ingredients. Once people have mastered the basics, they will “feel a little more confident and have a better understanding of how to make the best barbecue they can make with whatever appliance or appliance they have to cook it on,” Abdoo says.

Grill tips from the Pig Beach BBQ pit masters

Buy the big box of aluminum foil

Packing ingredients is essential to retain moisture and flavor, so ditch the smaller boxes of foil and cling film for the larger, heavy options. McBride recommends the 18- or 20-inch sizes and says you can find them at restaurant stores, chain stores like Costco, and online. “If you’re using that little cling film from the grocery store, it’s hard to wrap a single pork chop in one of those wraps, so it’s impossible to wrap a brisket,” he says.

Use a digital thermometer.

A good instant-read thermometer is “infinitely important,” Abdoo says. “It’s the only way you can ever accurately tell when something is… raw or ready to be taken off the stove,” he says. He warns against relying on the meters built into smokers and grills, as they cannot measure the temperature in the food.

Layer your gloves

McBride says a good pair of cotton gloves is a must-have for any barbecue griller. They help protect your hands without making them slippery. Use them under a layer of latex gloves, and “it’s like having fireproof hands,” he says.

Use a chimney starter.

“You don’t want to use chemicals to make your fire,” says McBride. “The taste just isn’t very good,” adds Abdoo. Instead, invest in a chimney starter to quickly get your charcoal up and to run.

Practice with cheaper cuts

Like anything, practice makes perfect at barbecuing. But trial-and-error is a lot cheaper with pork shoulder than brisket, Abdoo says. “Pork shoulder and brisket have very similar fundamental cooking techniques within the barbecue world because they are large pieces,” he says. “If your pork shoulder is undercooked or overcooked, it’s much more forgiving than brisket.”

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I have been blogging since August 2011. I have had over 10,000 visitors to my blog! My goal is to help people, and I have the knowledge and the passion to do this. I love to travel, dance, and play volleyball. I also enjoy hanging out with my friends and family. I started writing my blogs when I lived in California. I would wake up in the middle of the night and write something while listening to music and looking at the ocean. When I moved to Texas, I found a new place to write. I would sit in my backyard while everyone else was at work, and I could write all day.