Wood…..most folks are not into wood for much more then throwing a log into the fireplace to keep warm during the winter. Many do not even care what type of wood they are burning for heat, just that it is a good burn. Well, BBQ‘ers are a bit more selective with the types of wood they like to use. I remember when I started BBQing, I was using, like what most folks will do, whatever type of wood was available in my area. In Florida, that means Oak wood, and lots of it. I would always be scrounging around for whatever wood I could pick up, at times I felt like a storm hunter, looking for downed trees after a big storm went through my area. This worked okay, for a while, but I soon realized I needed another layer of flavors on my products, that I just was not getting from my local wood. I needed a variety of wood, properly dried, that would compliment the products I produced on my cooker. So, I did what came natural, for me, I went on-line. A couple years ago, a good friend of Let’s Talk Hog, came to visit from Canada, Wilfred Reinke, (Fred) many folks know him as the Oshawa Ogre. Fred came down for a visit, during Pigfest here in Lakeland, Fl two years ago, and he told me about Baxter’s Original, in Georgia. Fred stopped in and visited with Michael Baxter, and his family, during his drive down to Florida. Fred was thoroughly impressed, not only with Michael’s products, but also in his passion to offer only the best products to his customers.
I decided to get in touch with Michael, and using his products has greatly effected my results. Where I was just trying to utilize any type of wood I could pick up, Baxter Original, offers only the best quality wood, from all different types of hardwood and fruit woods. One of the things that sets Baxter’s apart from the other wood providers is, Baxter’s only air dries their products. Many wood providers try to speed up the drying process by kiln drying their products, not Baxter’s. At Baxter’s they place their wood on racks and force constant airflow around the wood. This allows the wood to dry in a natural time frame which preserves all of the natural sugars in the wood which helps to provide the most flavor. By forcing air around the wood they can ensure that the wood dries completely so you never receive wet wood.
If you are looking for a variety of wood Baxter’s can offer you that. They offer many what I would call base wood; Hickory, Oak, Almond, Pecan & Maple. I like to start with one of these woods, then add extra flavor by using some fruit wood, it depends on what I’m cooking, as to which fruit wood I use. Baxter’s offers all types of fruit wood, to satisfy your needs; Apple Cherry & Peach. They offer these woods in a variety of cuts, premium smoker wood chunks, smoker wood chips, and whole logs. I have personally used the chunks in a gravity feed cooker, my stumps, and in a stick burner, my Lang 36. I have not had any negative issues using either cooker. All I got out of the wood I used was, wonderful wood flavor, exactly what I was looking for.
Baxter’s Original is a popular source for wood, amongst professional BBQ cooks. Baxter’s is used by many winning teams, such as Rescue Smokers, Holy Smokes, Wooly Bully Mafia, Git-R-Smoked, Q-Fused BBQ & my team Hogs Gone Wild BBQ. Beside the fact that Baxter’s puts out quality wood, that keeps these and many other teams winning, Baxter’s knows what the teams are looking for in their wood, because Michael Baxter has a BBQ team of his own. So to say that Baxter’s Original knows how to cater to BBQ teams, is an understatement. In my opinion, it would be in the best interest of any BBQ team, or even backyard cook, looking to up your game and flavor profiles, get some Baxter’s Original wood. Ordering is very easy on the Baxter’s web-site: click here
I would like to personally thank Michael Baxter for taking time to sit down with Let’s Talk Hog, and grant us a short interview. I enjoyed learning more about Baxter’s Original, I hope you will too.
LTH: Michael, if you could please, give us a brief history of Baxter’s Original, when and how did Baxter’s Original get started?
Baxter’s: Baxter’s Original started in November 2009, in my barn, in Fitzgerald, Ga. We sold our first bag of wood chips on Ebay, and lost $1 in the deal, due to shipping fees. We now have a physical store front and a real wood shop, with myself and to other employees.
The location for Baxter’s Original shop is:
9am to 5pm
9am to 5pm
9am to 5pm
9am to 5pm
10am to 2pm
LTH: Who is involved with the running of Baxter’s Original?
Baxter’s: I own the business, and operate as President. Matt Green is out Production and Store Manager. Aaron Smith is our Director of Marketing.
LTH: I know, first hand, that you offer great wood to BBQ teams, are there other types of customers that help make up your customer base?
Baxter’s: Although we have a special place in out hearts for all the Pro Competition Teams out there using and promoting our products, out real customer base is the backyard chef. The guys/gals that may only grill/smoke twice a month, but when they do, they want the best products possible. We love getting an email or phone call from a customer that just had the best cook of their life, and attributes us to part of that. That’s what really keeps us going.
LTH: What is the name of your Professional BBQ team, and who are the members of your team?
Baxter’s: Our Competition BBQ Team is called-Aunt Mary’s BBQ Brigade. The team is made up of Myself, My Father, Aaron Smith & my Brother David.
LTH: Where did you get the name of your BBQ Team?
Baxter’s: Our team name is a tribute to my late Great Aunt, Mary E. Baxter. She was our family matriarch and the single most positive influence in my life. She always told me to pursue my passions and to do it with integrity and zeal, she is missed. I can’t start a fire without remembering her with a smile, she was 92.
LTH: What are some highlights of your BBQ team, memorable calls you have received?
Baxter’s: We did 7 competitions in 2012, with the largest competition being the Smoke on the Suwanee, in Live Oak, Fl. We got an 8th place chicken call there, with 83 teams. We had a 3 call day, at Pigs and Wings in Perry, Fl. We have competed in 3 competitions in 2013, with several calls, and hopefully more to come.
LTH: What is one thing on your BBQ bucket list?
Baxter’s: The first thing on my BBQ Bucket list is to win our first Grand Championship, hell, a Reserve Grand Championship would be nice right now….
LTH: What is on the horizon for Baxter’s Original, what are some goals you may have?
Baxter’s: We have been growing leaps and bounds over the last 2 years, and we do not see it slowing down anytime soon. Most recently we have been working to add more restaurant business to our books, and now we supply some of the best BBQ joints on the East Coast. I think we will see a lot more action in this area over the next year or two.
LTH: Where can folks go to get your fine products?
Baxter’s: Please visit our web-site at: www.baxtersoriginal.com or feel free to stop by our showroom.
Thanks Michael for the interview, and all you do for BBQ.