Sharp Food Focus: Summer Rib Battle

by Sharp | September 12, 2012

Ok, so let’s get this Rib-Off going. Quick back story is that there have been a few months of verbal jabbing here at Sharp about summer BBQ recipes and who in the office makes the ultimate cut (of meat). So this week we’ve challenged Bob and Todd to put their skills where their mouth is so to speak and get grilling – with our team of food experts serving as the honorable judging committee.

What follows below is a rough timeline of events … edited by yours truly:

Friday, Pre-Grilling

Sharp: So, you guys ready to go?
Bob: Is this on the record?
Sharp: Everything is on the record. You’re looking pretty confident, Bob, what’s the secret behind the smirk?
Todd: Yeah, let’s hear it.
Bob: Well, let’s just say I have some signature moves.
Sharp: Oh really? As in…
Bob: It’s really about the secret ingredients during a few different phases. The first is really the Brine.
Todd: Now some people don’t even do a Brine.. But it is, let us say, a “popular method.”
Bob: Are you calling me average?
Todd: I’m just saying that some of it is a bit…pedestrian
Sharp: Sounds like fighting words. What’s your take then, if not the secret ingredients?
Todd: Well I’d say it’s more about the method – temperature, process, timing, heat. That’s what really makes the difference.
Sharp: Interesting. Are you a smoker?
Todd: To be determined… I’m not giving too much away, but there could be some smoke, some new flavors.. I’m not over committing till the mood strikes this weekend.
Sharp: Fair enough. A savvy competitor. Ok, Bob. So back the secret ingredients. Any you can share?
Bob: Let’s just say that there’s a little Cherry Coke in the mix. Not Diet.
Sharp: Good. I don’t think anyone here is the type to count calories.
Sharp: So it looks like a battle between ingredients and technique. Only the weekend will tell. Any last words before going into battle?
Bob: Let’s just say, “Adam gave Eve his rib. I’m giving you mine.”
Sharp: Scary stuff right there. Todd, any rebuttal?
Todd: At times like this, I turn to Yoda: “Patience you must have.”

So with that, our guys got grilling…and supplied the evidence to prove it:




Monday Taste-Test
And now for the final decision. We brought in Jessica Alter and Brett Muramoto, some of our resident food fanatics, to serve as the official judges. They dove right in, sampling from both of our guys.




And the verdict:

Jess: I thought Todd’s sauce was the best. It has a great honey-glazed sweetness to it and just the right kick. But if I had to pick one rib to eat all over, I’d go with Bob’s dry rub. The meat fell right off the bone, and the outside had a nice char but was still really tender.
Brett: I think I’d agree. I really liked the smokiness of Todd’s .I can tell he used wood smoke, but I have to go with Bob’s slow-cooked approach.
Jess: Final answer. Can I dip Bob’s in Todd’s sauce?

Todd’s sauce dominance seemed to prevail. When we opened up the ribs to the rest of the office, his saucy goodness received the highest marks from the team so, a very close match all around! (For more photo evidence, take a look at our Sharp Facebook page).

Since we typically have food on the brain here at Sharp, we’ve also invited Jess and Brett to weigh in on some of the best products, places and meat-tastic events for those of us who are maybe a little less likely to spend two days at the grill. For your pleasure, we submit their Sharp Picks:


Best Rib RecipesBest Rib Recipe Now: What’s seasonal, smoky, and gooey all over? This Baby Back Ribs Recipe with Blueberry Glaze.

Must-Have Meat Gear: There’s nothing we hate more than overcooked meat, so we use this meat thermometer to make sure our grub stays pink and juicy.

Read Meat: To be perfectly honest, I bought Good Meat for the photos. For a real “how-to” on grilling, check out: The Barbecue Bible.

Make a Res: If you love the whole farm-to-table idea (we do), attractive waiters wearing plaid (Jess does), and an opportunity to see/approve your Black Angus steak before it gets fired up (duh.)—then Prime Meats in Brooklyn is the place to go.

Meet Meat: For a meat fest of epic proportions, we just went to Meatopia on Randall’s Island Park in NYC, September 8th. We helped run the Best Butcher Contest, and got to see an amazing lineup of chefs, a never-ending sausage toppings bar, MEAT and…well, that’ll do.

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