At this point in my BBQ career, I've tried dozens upon dozens of homemade rub recipes and all but given up on commercial blends. In fact, the only meat that I really give thought to applying a rub to these days is pork. Beef, fish, shellfish, and lamb all get the same dash of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper before they hit my grill. That all changed with a chance encounter at a local BBQ club meeting. That fateful Sunday I ran into a guy named Rod who just so happened to have a trunk full of custom made rubs bouncing around. Before I left the parking lot, Rod had loaded me down with his steak rub, Steak Out!, and his blackening rub, In the Black!. He promised that the distinguishing aspect of his rubs were a carefully thought out and tested balance of flavors. I rolled home eager to give them a try but fully prepared to be disappointed.
It took a good five or six days before beef made its way onto the home menu, but when it did I decided to give Steak Out! a try. I had a couple nice looking ribeye steaks and I loaded them down heavy with Steak Out! I was more than nervous about laying the rub on so heavy, but I really wanted to get a sense of what the rub had to offer. I could tell from sight that this wasn't another variation on Montreal Steak. There way far too much red stuff (Paprika? Cayenne?) and I could make out little green bits of herb (oregano? thyme?) So, it was with trepidation and a bit of excitement that I let the steaks hit the Weber.
Confession time - While I was grilling the steaks, I performed my traditional poke test to determine the doneness of my steaks. When I jammed my index finger into my mouth I was surprised to not taste salt. Most steak rubs lean HEAVILY to the salt side of things. This time around I was greeted with a delicious mixture of flavors. I took the steaks inside and quickly got to work plating them, eager to taste what was going on. What I learned was that Rod may have stumbled on bottled lightning. Since that first night trying out Rod's Rubs, I have played extensively with both rubs. I've tried them on grilled shrimp, fish filets, veggies - you name it. This stuff really lives up to the tag line of "What can't you rub it on?". My personal favorite is the Steak Out! rub, but don't overlook In the Black. I really hope you'll take the time to visit Rod's Rub website and order some for yourself. I've had the opportunity to speak at length with Rod since trying his rubs and from my perspective he is taking a shot at this business for all the right reasons. He's earnest, likable, and genuinely knowledgeable about what makes good BBQ.