At this tasting were 3 certified KCBS judges (Kansas City BBQ Society) and 2 of those judges were also Judges in The Jack Daniels International BBQ Competition, the world series of BBQ. This was a tough audience.
The platter: Smoked sausage, brisket, turkey, ribs and pulled pork. Very attractive.
Overall, we felt that none of the meats had enough smokey flavour. The brisket was the best result overall, juicy but a touch overcooked. One of the criteria for brisket texture is that one should be able to pick up a slice of brisket and it should hang together as it goes into one's mouth.This brisket fell in pieces as it was lifted. I thought the sausage was quite tasty and had a mild slow burn at the finish but the consistency could be better. The ribs, although juicy, were somewhat overdone as the meat dropped off the bone, did not even "fall" off the bone. However, rib meat should not "fall" off the bone, but ideally, when biting into the rib, the meat should easily peal off the bone. The ribs were tasty but definitely needed more smoke. The pulled pork also definitely needed more smoke, and although not dry, was a touch overcooked. The turkey was moist and tasty, but had a bit too much pepper seasoning and needed more smoke.
We learned that maple wood was used for smoking. All of us felt that dry cured white oak would have been better (allowed to dry out for about 2-3 years) to provide right degree of smokey flavour.