How'd you get into barbecue? *****


Jim Lampe

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
←no long story here....

grilled since I was a teenager...

one day I simply got hungry, tasted some que I knew I could make better.

another day, someone gave me a bushel basket of apple wood.

that was it.

Rich Dahl

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
Started in the 50s when my Dad would fire up the charcoal grill with the grate you could crank up and down. He taught me how to cook burgers and hot dogs and I was in charge when all the relatives would come over in the summer for a BBQ.

Tony R

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
For us was it happened when my kids were born. Couldn't really go out and I just started cooking. Didn't even know BBQ forums existed. I was taking pics anyways. But the show pitmasters gave me the final push to research smoking meats.

Rusty James

TVWBB Emerald Member
Started in the 50s when my Dad would fire up the charcoal grill with the grate you could crank up and down. He taught me how to cook burgers and hot dogs and I was in charge when all the relatives would come over in the summer for a BBQ.

Bumping an old thread, but I remember the three-legged grills from the 1960s that fit that bill. Back in those days, if you fired up a grill, half the neighborhood kids would show up (including me)! Charcoal-grilled burgers imparted a special flavor that I never forgot, and thus I was hooked.

My biggest regret in life was looking over (over-looking) the higher-priced Weber products until two years ago. What a waste. :(
Wow, my post in this thread was six years ago. It's funny to think back to then and remember that I thought I knew everything there was to know about BBQ. Well, it's a half dozen years later and I'm STILL learning how.

Don't compete anymore, don't judge anymore, but I still LUV to throw a big batch of jerky in the my (now) very old original WSM or the occasional butt. I do believe this way of cooking will stay with me forever.


TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
Huh, I never responded here. Not a fancy story or anything -very similar to many others. I really enjoyed cooking on the old gasser, but pretty much burgers, dogs, steaks and chicken. Nothing too fancy. I began watching "License to Grill" with Rob Rainford on the old Discovery Home network and began dreaming of bigger, better cooks. I started trying to do ribs with a makeshift smoker box made of foil and one burner on. They were OK, but nothing special. I had also tried store bought 'ready to cook' ribs like Tony Romas, etc. They didn't do much for me. And restaurant BBQ, while decent, was something that I knew I could improve on. After a bunch of research, I convinced the wife that I needed a WSM. That was when the downward spiral began. :) Several years (and cookers) later, here I am.
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Dad did the grillin' as I grew up but never taught me. As a teenager, I went to parties & watched friends (inevitably!) singe their eyebrows lighting up their dad's gasser. Watched them grill burgers in the dark with no way to tell they were done, people coming over & dumping their beer on the patties, "makes em taste better!" - lucky nobody got sick.
The first time I grilled myself, was in my early 20's, in the early 90's. Went camping at Big Sur with my better half. It was the first time camping on my own. I borrowed my parents little 3 legged, avacado green, hand cranked - to change the grill height - charcoal grill. The center "stud" that went through the center to the crank mechanism & that the grill sat on, was missing. I improvised using a long bolt - that grill was wobbly sitting on that bolt. Somehow I managed to get the coals going & balanced 2 patties on either side of the wobbly grill. I had NOT A CLUE what I was doing! "Fake it til you make it" was what I was doing, I guess. Now, I don't know what it was - was it being outdoors, camping, the fresh air, or was it that the bbq gods were watching over me? Because, those were some of the best burgers I'd ever had!
That's how I started... & the rest is history.

Ron G.

TVWBB Wizard
I've been enjoying Grilled and Smoked food since I was about 5 years old, but Low-And-Slow "Barbeque" (you know, the REAL stuff...) was really not common around here until fairly recently -

Some of my earliest memories involve Dad cooking-up stuff on his old, brown super-deluxe 26-incher that we had in about 1970. He worked at a TV & Appliance store that also sold Weber Charcoal and Gas grills during the nice weather months. He had the table that hung on the front handle with the adjustable tube legs and the potato / corn "ring" that could fill-out the perimeter. Particularly memorable were his glazed ham and Turkey. HIS Dad (Gramps) had one of those glass-front, oven-style charcoal rotisserie units, and he ALWAYS used the Electric Starter (coil that could be embedded in a pile of coals) / I would give a (insert body part here) for some of his rotisserie chicken now....

Also memorable - LOTS of good smoked sausage and pork chops / meats from a local butcher / slaughter operation in the town where he had his store. My home town also had MANY small country markets that smoked their own stuff, influenced by the old German and Polish people who settled the farm country in this part of Wisconsin / the US (Whitelaw and "School Hill" to name a few - ever try warm, cured sausage straight-outa' the "smoke house"??? MMMmmmmm.....) Also did some fishing on Lake Michigan and enjoyed Smoke Salmon in the late Summer / early Fall. (And a bit later, smoked chubs or Blue Runners with cold beer and good bread made a good occasional meal.)

When I went away to College in Milwaukee - I found a place to be able to store a portable gas grill that I "pimped-out" with some Ceramic Briquettes in place of the customary Lava Rock and an adapter for a 5-pound Propane Tank. Me and some friends enjoyed grilling with that at the park / parking lot / County Stadium when our food choices needed a change-of-pace. I went through 2 or 3 of those until I got married - then bought a better Gasser (Our Apartment did not allow charcoal on the patio).

When we FINALLY decided it was time to get our own place, one of my first purchases was my 18" WSM after doing some careful research and a bit of lurking here. I originally wanted to "go for the gusto" and get a REAL, heavy horizontal offset - but upon re-examining the cost of entry / approval by SWMBO, the WSM seemed the logical choice, and BOY! Hindsight being 20/20; have I been glad that I did that instead! After that - I could use my Gasser for quick cooks where I wanted the CONVENIENCE or my smoker for the weekends, when I had the time to go full-out for the FLAVOR.

For my 50th B-Day, I decided to become "Tri-Grillular": I added my Copper Performer with a Rotisserie that is on it almost permanently.

I like to think that I now cook-up some pretty decent Barbeque for a yankee! and owe a lot of gratitude to Chris and the gang here who have inspired me and answered LOTS of my stupid questions over the years!
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