Meet My New Smoker!!

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As you all remember, my long time smoker was stolen while prepping for a whole hog event. If you’re a Carolina whole hog stylist, your smoker is very specific. I’ve cooked on a whole variety of smokers but none of them will do a proper Carolina whole hog. To do Carolina BBQ you need a specialized Carolina PIT.

My new smoker is designed to take hardwood embers and slowly smoke the meats til tender. While it’s direct heat, the coals are very far away from the meat leaving the cooking temperature still very low.

We gave her a test run by getting my buddies to bring over a massive amount of meat as I burn down logs to fire the pit. We had 4 pork shoulders, 2 slabs of ribs, 6 slabs of beef short ribs and 2 chickens! Oh and a handful of rib tips to snack on.

She burned beautifully. Came to temperature with very little effort and held steady between refirings. I had mine specially customized with bar AND diamond grates to make the ultimate Carolina crackling on the pork. If your pit can’t make crackling, it might be a good smoker but it ain’t North Carolina BBQ.

I’m so happy to have my new member of the BBQ family. My wife and friends named her Fat Sally. Say hi Fat Sally!

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Introducing the Team!!

Whole Hog BBQ needs a decently large team. If nothing else, to move the massive dead weight of our pigs. So the Arrogant Swine crew in alphabetical order (of course I end up last)

Angel Mercado – Beer-conomist/Head of Infrastructure

Angel believes sobriety is a problem which must be dealt with extreme prejudice. So he’s in charge of calculating how much beer we need to get you properly sh*t-faced. He’s also our infrastructure guy, making sure minor little details like “WE HAVE NO POWER!!!” doesn’t get in the way of Hog cookery. Angel covers our business development activities for Queens.

Ed Mitchell BBQEd Mitchell – Patron Saint of The Arrogant Swine

As a North Carolina BBQ team our patron saint is no less than the legendary Ed Mitchell to hold us to those higher standards of whole hog smoking. Also since the Roman Catholic Church has already excommunicated 80% of the team, we couldn’t go with the normal roster of saints.

Josh Bowen – Banjo Plucker/BBQ Alchemist/Team Patron

Josh is the owner and pitmaster of highly popular joints John Brown Smokehouse and Alchemy Texas BBQ. He has generously acted as incubator for the team – supplying us with hogs, use of his kitchens, and keeping the local Fire Department from shutting us down (again…).

Steven Goldberg – Team mead brewer/Cicerone

Steve is our beer guy. We will not serve a single beer with our BBQ unless it’s Steve Approved. What the hell is a cicerone? It’s a dude who tells you what beer to pair with your food; now shut up and drink your beer!

Mark Macatangay – Event Photographer/Bigfoot-in-Residence

Left to my own devices, we’d never have any photos. Things start getting busy and I completely forget to record the action. This is why we have our very own resident Bigfoot to stand over the crowd and snap pictures. The other important reason for having your own bigfoot is to protect our pig head displays. Our pig heads are enormously popular with the crowd. People take more pictures of the head than they do me! Thus our bigfoot keeps our intoxicated guests from making off with our heads (again),

Matthew Gelfand – Director of Kosher Compliance/ Logistics & Crisis Management

Matt knows how Superman feels. No one ever calls him unless things have gone horribly, horribly awry. Pit get stolen 4 hours before cook time? Call Matt. Vegan protest? Matt’s there with the attack dogs as well as breakfast for the crew. On his last blind date, she wouldn’t give him her number but asked for his just in case her basement floods again. The Arrogant Swine is the only kosher compliant whole hog BBQ team. How does he pull that off? I’m not sure. Don’t ask don’t tell. Matt handles our business development activities for Brooklyn.

Arrogant Swine LogoTyson Ho – Founder/Hog Cooker/PhD in Redneck Anthropology  

They say the best job is the one that follows your passions. To the chagrin of my wife, I love cooking whole animals twice my body weight and I like starting fires. If that wasn’t bad enough I have the largest documentation on whole hog cookery in various American regions. Everything from the cooking styles to hog breeds. Surely that deserves a graduate degree no?