In George Orwell’s famous allegorical novel, Animal Farm, the beasts revolt, take over the farmyard, and adopt the Seven Commandments of Animalism. For those not bunking off and smoking a fag behind the bike sheds, you’ll remember the first one; ‘All Animals Are Equal’.
As the story unfolds dissension takes hold and the pigs snatch control, eventually scrawling a change to the hallowed commandments: ‘All Animals Are Equal, Yet Some Are More Equal Than Others’.
And it’s this message that can be said of ribs too.
All Ribs Are Equal, But Red’s Ribs Are More Equal Than Others. And there’s a reason for this…
The quality of the meat, the cut, the rub, the low and slow smoking, the wood choice and cooking temperature, the BBQ sauce mop, and the final flame lick from the pit. True barbecue is a mysterious blend of art and science, but the end result is glorious, carnivorous pleasure.
So, for all believers and non believers who have yet to chow down on a rack of Red’s incredible ribs, lock your eyes round this, and see if we can convert you to ribbed pleasure…
Beef long: These are huge, tender beef ribs, also known as Jacob’s Ladder.
At Red’s, we have a custom Longhorn cut based on the Jacob’s Ladder spec, with a certain level of fat marbling. We rub them in a ‘Dalmatian’-based rub, a blend largely of pepper and salt, and other herbs and spices. It’s a rough texture rub that doesn’t go pasty and helps to create a spicy bark on the meat.
This is left for 24hrs to marinade. We then mop the ribs in our Unholy BBQ sauce and smoke low and slow for 8- 12 hours over a secret blend of hickory and fruit woods in custom-built Oklahoman smokers.
We mop the ribs one final time in Unholy sauce and finish over our open charcoal and wood burning pit. This final lick of fire and smoke from the burning wood helps intensify the natural bark on the meat, and creates the all-important Maillard reaction between the amino acids of the meat and the sweet glaze.
It’s this that creates an incredible all-round flavour – sweet, salty, sour, spicy and umami. When you bite through the rib, it should provide some resistance and leave teeth marks, not fall away and disintegrate like happens with many ribs on offer in the UK.
You should also be able to see the Circle of Truth (the smoke ring) running round the inner edge of the meat. Amen to the beef long brother.
Baby Backs: Our cut is different to what the UK public is used to. Red’s Baby Backs are butchered in the traditional US style, leaving plenty of loin meat on the top, making it more of a chunky bite.
In the UK, this loin meat is usually butchered off for Back Bacon, whereas in the States US consumers prefer streaky bacon. The ribs are rubbed for 24 hours, smoked for 3-5 hours, spritzed with vinegar and finished off on the grill and mopped with our Unholy BBQ sauce, a punchy mix of 32 heavenly ingredients.
St Louis: We’re one of few UK restaurants which can get hold of this cut of rib, as it’s not one often used in the UK. It’s from the spare rib cut and is butchered in the traditional American style, making it shorter and removes the feathery cartilage bones, leaving just meaty juiciness.
Our pork ribs are rubbed in a Memphis-style blend of sugar and mild spices, mopped with Unholy BBQ Sauce and smoked for 4-6 hours. Again, a final mopping of Unholy BBQ sauce and a chargrill over our wood and charcoal pit imparts huge flavours and a sticky glaze.