TMBBQ Fire & Smoke - Pitmaster Tim Rattray & Chef John Brand

I have been to a lot of TMBBQ events over the years. Fest, Road Trip, and Behind the Pit Dinner but never Fire & Smoke until now. Photographer whiz/friend Robert Lerma was shooting the event for 44 Farms and invited me along. The event was being held in San Antonio at the new Hotel Emma in the Pearl District. The hotel combines the elements of the old brewery and a classic, refined look into a beautiful, well thought out space. The culinary mash-up involved Pitmaster/owner/chef Tim Rattray of The Granary and Chef John Brand of Supper. Robert and I arrived in San Antonio early so we spent some time at The Granary. We watched and took pictures (of course) of Tim and his staff prepping for the dinner which was pretty cool.
44 Farms strip loins that have been cold smoked and now being seasoned
Loins being grilled on a Big Green Egg
Finished product
Profile view
44 Farms smoked pastrami
Pastrami being wrapped for the event
The Calm
Menu:
First
•Carrot 'Elote" + Espelette Crema
•Asparagus + Miso Mustard
•Smoked Sardine + Lemon Curd + Caviar Potato Salad
•Millionaires Bacon + Smoked Dates
•44 Farms Beef Tongue Sandwiches + Pickled Vegetables
•44 Farms Grilled Flank Steak + Yam Neua
•Texas Toast + Barbeque Butter
•Grilled Leeks + Smoked Clam Emulsion + Smoked Sea Salt

Second
•44 Farms Beef Cheek + Charred Eggplant + Corn Pudding
•44 Farms Smoked Oxtail Gravy + Cornbread
•44 Farms Smoked Brisket Pastrami + ‘Kraut Aioli + Rye Crumble
•44 Farms Smoked Grilled NY Strip + Barbeque Béarnaise
•Mushrooms + Braised Greens
•Salt and Vinegar Brussel Sprouts
•Crispy Smoked Quail

Dessert
•IX-XI 911 Cocktail + El Mayor Tequila Anjeo + Licor 43
•Grilled Lemon Poundcake + Blueberry Violet Sorbet
•Butterscotch Pudding + Coconut Tapioca + Pickled Blackberry
•Whoopie Pies + Dulce De Leche
•Cheddar + Apple + Rosemary Galette
•Chocolate Cream Pie
•Sweet Corn Panna Cotta + Huckleberry Compote + Corn Streusel
Smoked Tasmanian Ocean Trout with Roasted Poblano Pico + Smoked Sea Salt
44 Farms Beef Tongue Sandwiches + Pickled Vegetables
44 Farms Grilled Flank Steak being sliced
44 Farms Grilled Flank Steak + Yam Neua
Smoked Sardine + Lemon Curd + Caviar Potato Salad

Texas Toast
Barbeque Butter
44 Farms Smoked Grilled NY Strip + Barbeque Béarnaise
44 Farms Beef Cheek + Charred Eggplant + Corn Pudding
44 Farms Smoked Oxtail Gravy + Cornbread
Crispy Smoked Quail
44 Farms Smoked Brisket Pastrami being sliced
44 Farms Smoked Brisket Pastrami + 'Kraut Aioli + Rye Crumble
There was a lot of food and a lot of courses to eat. I never heard some of the ingredients. I had to Google them. Events likes these let me step out of my culinary comfort zone. I am not afraid to try things. I am just afraid of spending money on something I might regret. The in-house made Texas toast with barbeque butter was excellent. Tim uses the drippings from briskets/pork butts to make the butter. I wish I could buy that stuff. The beef cheek was wonderful. The tenderness and the richness of the meat with other complex flavors and textures made it memorable. I have no words for the smoked oxtail gravy and cornbread. Just wow. Recently Daniel Vaughn declared that the Friday only pastrami at The Granary was the best in America. I have tried the short rib version (Tuesday only) and thought it was fantastic. The pastrami this night did not disappoint. I enjoyed the balance of the smoke and salt. The crust and the tender meat brought it all together. I need to get down there on a Friday soon. Anyone want to join me?
Guards Porsche Red - a drink with El Mayor Silver Tequila garnished with habanero-infused watermelon ice. Delicious.
Dessert Bar
Pitmaster Tim Rattray + Chef John Brand + Daniel Vaughn
I had a great time at Fire & Smoke. Sure the event is pricey, but it is worth it. Come with an open mind and let your taste buds be blown away. Pitmaster Tim Rattray and Chef John Brand did a phenomenal job in joining forces and creating a menu that combined fine dining and barbecue. Their imagination and skills surprised you each time a dish was brought to the table. You kept wanting more even if you were satiated.

Until next time, happy smoking...

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