Sunday, May 16, 2021

Customer service

 Posted yesterday about the chicken I made in the new smoker.  Didn't get done til fairly late so haven't tried it yet, but looking forward to some later today.  I mentioned the purchase story and thought I'd share.  Especially since it's actually about customer service.

Started thinking about a new smoker some time ago.  I have a big wood/charcoal fired side-box smoker that I've had for almost twenty years.  Got it used in a trade for some Harley work and it has been great.  Having a big group of people over you can fire it up at oh-dark-thirty and there is room for a lot of food.  I've fed sixty people out of that thing, smoking 15 to 20 pounds of pork along with macaroni and cheese and other various side dishes.  It is labor intensive though.  Hard to maintain the temperature, especially here in the Pacific NW where the outside temps stay generally cool and especially here on the coast where we get breezes that strip the heat from the box.  It is definitely a nice weather smoker and best for large groups.

Started doing some research and found a lot.  Pit Boss makes some great models, electric and pellet smoke.  Start at about $400.  Then I was at a motorcycle customer's and he had his little Masterbuilt running.  Paid about $150 on sale for it and loved it.  So I started looking.

Happened to be in a local sporting goods shop with a friend looking for ammo (he found his, nothing I needed but then I have stayed well stocked over the years so this shortage hasn't hit me much).  They had the Masterbuilt Sportsman Elite, normally $260 on sale for $210.  Propane powered, smoke box for wood chips, decent sized (40 inches).  I decided to pull the trigger and grab it.  They had two sitting on the floor and my buddy, who had also been thinking about it, grabbed the other.

So we find an employee with a hand truck and he pulls out both smokers.  Right about that time the owner walks through the door and asks what's going on.  Told him we were buying both and he announced that he'd have to give us a discount if we were going to buy in bulk.  I thought he was kidding but then he rang them up at $195 each instead.  Can't beat that for customer service, giving someone a discount after they've already announced their intention to buy at the tag price.

I'll be back.

As far as the smoker goes so far I've smoked a pork butt, skirt steak for fajitas, a stuffed pork loin, and beer can chickens.  Today I'm throwing in another pork butt.  I did discover that you can get better smoke by putting pellets in the tray, even though the instructions say to only use wood chips.  Not sure why they say that.  Hopefully I won't find out the hard way.