I love the "microbrew" movement in BBQ sauces and rubs. It has created many new products and companies that share the love of good BBQ with a passion to make a great product.
Shane Draper at Draper's BBQ is one of those folks who is sharing his passion and family traditions via his own "microbrew" BBQ sauce and rub. Shane is a 3rd generation pitmaster from Western Kentucky and as the label states, there's "3 generations of pride and flavor in a bottle" that honors his family hertiage. While I had met Shane on line awhile back, it was only recently that I actually got to chat with him a little at the Kentucky Bluegrass festival where he was sharing samples of his products.
I came home with a bottle of both the A.P. Rub and the Smokin' Sauce. I'd planned to cook with these products righ away, but a little knife accident sidelined me for a couple of weeks. I finally had the opportunity to fire up the grill and try out Draper's rub & sauce. I like to sample rubs and sauces with pork tenderloin or chicken. I think flavors stand out a little more with these meats.
So, we had a couple of pork tenderloins ready to go for dinner last night. I applied the A.P. Rub to both and grilled them on the Bubba Keg. When they were nearly done, I gave one of them a coat of Smokin' Sauce as a finish. Then, I sliced them and the family sat down to dinner.
Now usually, my wife and I like a finish sauce on pork tenderloin, but my kids prefer them dry. The Smokin' Sauce definitely changed that. Much to my surprise, the kids couldn't get enough of the sauced tenderloin. In fact, one of my daughters said, "I can't eat any more, but can I lick the sauce off that last piece?" Now if that's not an endorsement, I don't know what is!
In all seriousness, Smokin' Sauce is a tomato based sauce with a slightly sweet finish and just a little kick. Don't think "Kansas City" when I say sweet, cause that's not what I'm talking about. This is more Memphis than KC, but I'd even hesitate to put it in the category of Memphis style sauces. I have also tried the sauce on brisket and for me, I'd have to say that I prefered it on pork. But it was a good compliment to both.
The A.P. Rub is a really nice balance of salt, spice, and sweet. In fact Shane was sampling the product sprinkled on popcorn in Danville, KY. I found it just a little sweeter than the rubs I've been using most often. That's probably what makes it more all purpose than rubs targeted at a specific meat. For comparison, I'd definitely put it in the cateogry of a Dizzy Pig or Yardbird type of rub. Truly, it's an all-purpose (or A.P.) rub.
I'm very happy with the products and I'll continue to cook with them. I'm also anxious to try the other sauces that Shane's working on.
Check out Draper's BBQ at http://www.drapersbbq.com