Showing Some Love to Socks’ Love Rub

The theme of today’s blog entry is “love”.  For starters, I love BBQ!  I love that BBQ people are some of the nicest and most genuine people that I know.  I love that I’ve had the opportunity to try many new sauces, rubs, and gadgets.  And to continue along the theme of love, let me introduce to you Socks’ Love Rub.

Socks’ Love Rub originates from Duluth, GA, and is the creation of Steven Hartsock (who was kind enough to send me a bottle of his rub to sample).  The rub boasts of a blend of 100% all-natural spices and a bold flavor that works well on most meats.

I had the opportunity to talk with Steven on the phone to get some history on his product, and I really enjoyed his story!  Steven caught the BBQ bug about 8-9 years ago with the purchase of his first smoker.  Like a lot of people, he tried every rub on the market that he had access to at the time and found that each rub had certain elements that appealed to him.  As time went on, his hobby turned to a passion — so much so that when he and his wife got married, he gave his rub away in commemorative tins.  When people kept coming back to him asking where he could get more, Steven knew he had a good thing going.  (Picture below courtesy of Steven Hartsock, taken by MJ Gillespie Photography).

Now his product is available for everyone to try!  Let’s dive in and check out the rub…

Naked Observations

The bottle has a very appealing label that is pleasing to the eye.  Associating a hot pepper with a “love rub” sure goes a long way.  ;)  The rub itself is the ideal color for a BBQ rub to give your meat that ideal cooked color.  Taking a closer look at the rub reveals the various spices that are incorporated in the rub.

Tasting the rub reveals a coarse texture that is observed in the rub close-up.  The texture, in this case, does not detract from the overall quality of the rub.  Coarse ground black pepper appears to be the star in this product, but it is not all black pepper.  There are plenty of other spices in there to complement this rub.  All in all, very nice!

To the Meat of the Matter

Frankly, I was excited when I got asked to try this product.  So I got a few different cuts of meat to cook.  Today’s stars are beef ribs and pork butts.  I kept the prep work simple on the ribs and butts — a light coat of vegetable oil and then the seasoning.

Off they go into the smoker (an unmodified New Braunfels Bandera smoker) where I cooked between 250 and 300 degrees.  The pork went in at 9:00am.  At around noon, the ribs go in.  At 2:00 pm, the ribs get pulled out of the smoker and foiled to be finished later, while the pork butts get foiled and put back in the smoker.

A couple of hours later, the pork butts had reached an internal temperature of 195 degrees.  I pull them out and check them, and the meat had drawn up nicely off the bone.  The bone slid right on out.  Oh yeah… it was done!

Got a great yield out of the product!  Not much was wasted…

And some close-ups, to give you a good feel of the color that the rub added to the product.

And with the ribs, I was an idiot and ran out of fuel for cooking outdoors.  So I glazed the ribs with a light coat of Hoosier Daddy Sweet & Sassy BBQ Sauce and reheated in the oven for twenty minutes.  It was like steak on a stick!  (Pay no attention to the membrane on the ribs… it was a rookie “misteak”).

So is this a product that I would recommend?  Oh.  Yes.  Without a doubt!  You will certainly not be disappointed with this product.

You can find out more about Socks’ Love Rub (as well as make a purchase) by going to their website: http://www.socksloverub.com.  The product is also available for purchase by the good folks at BBQ Pro Shop.  You can also keep up with Socks’ Love Rub through Twitter and Facebook.