Fat Smack's BBQ Sauce

It's always exciting when a new BBQ sauce hits the market. The promise of something fresh and inventive is alluring. Fat Smack's Real BBQ Sauce (Bellville, IL) is one of the newest kids on the block and looking to make waves with Midwestern BBQ lovers.

Fat Smack's is owned by Jim Grindstaff and family. The sauce is the result of years of experiments. Jim endeavored to create a "more natural and healthier alternative to the ordinary, sticky, and artificially flavored sauces that we have become accustomed to."

Fat Smack's is packaged in 18 oz plastic bottles. The sauce is very thick with a slightly grainy texture. It pours very slowly like ketchup from a long neck glass bottle.

Tomato Puree is the foundation for Fat Smack's, giving the sauce a rich mahogany color. The tomato is accented by vinegar, natural sweeteners (no HFCS), spices and natural hickory smoke flavor. The result is a sauce with a bold, earthy flavor and very little sweetness. Though sugar and molasses are included for balance, vinegar tang and a strong black pepper finish are the dominant flavors.

Fat Smack's reminds me a great deal of the Texas born sauces that I have sampled. The savory, earthy flavors combine with the vinegar tang to create a flavor profile very different from the typical ultra sweet sauces of the Midwest. In that sense, Jim succeeded in doing just as he'd planned.

I used Fat Smack's BBQ Sauce on a couple of different occasions. I first used it as a dip for breaded chicken strips. I enjoyed the bold flavor straight out of the bottle. At room temperature, the sauce finished with a strong peppery kick. Later, I brushed the thick sauce on smoked chicken quarters that I served to my family. The sauce clung tightly to the poultry and produced a beautiful color. The sauce doesn't have a high gloss finish that competition cooks look for, but the chicken still looked appetizing enough for the back yard.

Fat Smack's was very well received by everyone in my family that tasted it (all Michiganders). The pepper and vinegar flavors were mellowed by the heat allowing for a very balanced flavor profile. It was an excellent choice for the crowd I was cooking for, as they too, have grown tired of ultra sweet sauces. For my tastes, I think I prefer something just a little sweeter, but I wouldn't hesitate to use it again. In fact, I've already had requests for more Fat Smack's this weekend.

If you're looking for a new sauce to add to your BBQ arsenal, check out Fat Smack's. If you're close to Bellville, IL, you can purchase the sauce at several local retailers. For the rest of you, bottles of Fat Smack's can be purchased directly from their website.  Don't forget to see how Fat Smack's rates on our "Product Reviews" page.

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