JACOBSEN STORIES - Volume 2. "BBQ 2.0"

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Our mission at Jacobsen is to craft America's finest elemental cooking ingredients and to create unique products, events, and resources that inspire people to cook, eat, and live well - every day. We hope these stories inspire you, in some small way, to do just that.

-The Jacobsen Family 


In 2015 we created a new event series called Salt Fire Water. The idea behind the series and it's namesake was to strip down the typical wine/beer-paired dinner and focus on the core elements of what makes a culinary experience truly special. To us, this meant getting rid of the pretention, the stuffiness, the decorum, and the general pomp and circumstance so typical of ubiquitous food events around the country, and re-focusing on food, tradition, hospitality, and community. In short we wanted to create a space where people could be comfortable and celebrate each other by breaking bread with new and old friends. 

Fast forward to 2016. A short time ago we flew out our friend Chef Philip Krajeck from Nashville, Tennessee where he runs one of the best restaurants in the South: Rolf & Daughters. Our new friend Chef Philip (above on the right) teamed up with our old friend Chef Gabriel Rucker (above on the left) - James Beard Award-Winning Chef of Le Pigeon restaurant in Portland - and we asked them to cook some proper family-style BBQ for 110 people at our headquarters in SE Portland. 

What they made may not have been "proper" BBQ - as they infused their respective New American culinary styles into the food - but it was epic nonetheless. And with the addition of some live honky tonk from Jake Ray and The Cowdogs, butcher-papered tables, and some good old Franz white bread to soak up the deliciousness, we had ourselves a proper feast.

READ ON: Checkout the beautiful images below, click on links below to explore and purchase products used at the feast, read a short interview with Chef Philip Krajeck, and discover simple recipes that you can re-create at home.

Chef Philip Krajeck and his sous chef for the event Ray Nichols brought this incredible Country Ham all the way from Nashville, and Chef Gabriel Rucker made tortillas and a complex mole sauce that included a bit of our Jacobsen Habanero Salt.

Purchase Jacobsen Habanero Salt

Local artist Jake Ray and The Cowdogs joined us to play a great set of Americana/Country/Folk tunes as guests arrived and enjoyed their first few bites and glasses of wine and beer. CLICK HERE to listen to a couple of Jake Ray's songs.

When confronted with the challenge of what to serve at the barbecue, Chef Gabriel Rucker immediately decided on Wagyu Beef Brisket. Smoked and slow-cooked to perfection, glazed with this Blackberry Catsup, and finished with Jacobsen Flake Finishing Salt, this was one of the stars of the show.

Chef Philip Krajeck, on the other hand, opted to work with St. Louis Style Ribs from our friends and meat purveyors Nicky USA. He dry rubbed them, then slow-cooked them in the Traeger smoker, basting them with his Black Garlic Mop Sauce, and finishing with Jacobsen Black Garlic Salt. CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FULL RIB RECIPE BELOW.


Spicy Chipotle Slaw with Cashew Dressing - Chef Rucker

Tomato. Stonefruit. Lemon Herb Salad. Homemade Feta - Chef Krajeck

Southern Shelling Bean Stew. Tomato Conserva. Ramps - Chef Krajeck

Wagu Beef Brisket with Blackberry-Jalapeno Catsup - Chef Rucker

St. Louis Style Pork Ribs with Black Garlic, Coriander, and Farro Verde - Chef Krajeck

Frozen Coconut Cream Pie with Strawberries and Roasted Peanuts - Chef Rucker

Franz Bakery Thick-Sliced Texas Toast 

Chef Joshua McFadden of Ava Gene's and Tusk in Portland - a fellow Jacobsen Chef Partner - came to lend a hand to his friends Philip and Gabriel.

Chef Gabriel Rucker finished his Wagyu Beef Brisket dish with Jacobsen Flake Finishing Salt - our most renowned, signature product.


Purchase Jacobsen Flake Finishing Salt

After the first wave of BBQ was cleared away from the communal tables, it was CChef Philip's turn. Just before they made their way to diners on heaping platters, his Black Garlic-Glazed St. Louis Style Pork Ribs were finished a bit of our Jacobsen Black Garlic Salt! So many layers of flavor - it was incredible.

Purchase Jacobsen Black Garlic Salt

The communal meal ended with a few words from each of the chefs, and a massive wave of dessert - Frozen Coconut Cream Pie with Strawberries, Roasted Peanuts, and Jacobsen Cherrywood Smoked Salt.

Purchase Jacobsen Cherrywood Smoked Salt

After the event we caught up with Chef Philip Krajeck @pk_rolf @rolfanddaughters to chat a bit about food and cooking. See his recipe for St. Louis Style Black Garlic Ribs further below!

Interview by Matthew Domingo @matthewdomingo - Jacobsen Salt Co.'s Director of Marketing & Sales.

Jacobsen: What is it about our sea salt that made you want to use it in your kitchens?

Chef Philip: Salt is the cornerstone of flavor building. Jacobsen Sea Salt is domestic, delicious, and the people that make it have a palatable integrity and commitment to making the best product possible. 

Jacobsen: We think of you as a true craftsman and someone who is pushing the envelope of seasonal cooking here in the U.S. But how would you describe your style of cooking?

Chef Philip: Thanks so much for saying that! I like to describe my food philosophy very simply - we focus day in and day out on making seasonal, clean, modern food. Of course there is a lot of technique involved, but it all comes down to sourcing the best seasonal ingredients you can find.

Jacobsen: How did you learn to cook and what made you love it?

Chef Philip: I have been continually learning to cook my entire life.  Cooking in its essence is a process of transforming raw whole ingredients. It's a challenge and a reward. The challenge is continually adjusting and adapting to ingredients as they change with the weather and the environment in which they are grown.  The rewarding part is taking these raw products from a farm, changing them into something delicious with no waste and total respect, and then in turn sharing it with others.  

Jacobsen: Clearly you love food. How does this love translate to your loves for the other things in your life?

Chef Philip: It’s everything; the passion for family, food, community, art and respect for life permeate everything.  Owning and operating a restaurant, and the craft of cooking is not just a profession, it's a choice in life style.

Jacobsen: What's one piece of advise you have for the home cook?

Chef Philip: Use a fresh squeeze or two of lemon juice and a sprinkle of Jacobsen Flake Salt on roasted vegetables or a piece of roasted protein to really make the flavor pop. It's a small thing that's often overlooked, but try it and it will change your world. 

A huge thanks again to Chef Philip Krajeck and Chef Gabriel Rucker for joining us to create this feast for our Jacobsen community. 


St. Louis Style Pork Ribs with Black Garlic Sauce

Rib Rub

¼ cup Jacobsen Kosher Sea Salt

1 tbsp toasted crushed coriander

microplaned zest of 1 lime

microplaned zest of 1 lemon

microplaned zest of 1 orange

1 tbsp toasted crushed black pepper

Directions: Combine all and reserve.


Black Garlic Sauce

.25 cup black garlic, peeled

.25 cup roasted garlic

.5 cup sherry vinegar

1 tsp fish sauce

.25 cup Bee Local honey

.25 cup tomato conserva

.5 tsp toasted ground coriander seed

1 tbsp light soy

Directions: Combine all in a blender. Process on high until smooth and homogeneous. Reserve.


Overall Recipe

4ea racks St. Louis style spare ribs

Reserved Rib Rub

Reserved Black Garlic Sauce

2ea limes

Jacobsen Black Garlic Salt


  1. Prepare the ribs by trimming any excess fat and removing the thin membrane off of the back side of the bones.
  2. Sprinkle the ribs with the dry rub, coating both sides. Place in a non reactive pan and allow them to cure for 1-4 hours.
  3. Prepare your smoker with fruitwood chips such as apple or cherry. Set the temperature to 225F. Place a disposable aluminum pan under the area where the meat will be placed and fill with water.
  4. Place the ribs on the smoker bone side down.
  5. Smoke the ribs for approximately 5-6 hours. Begin basting with the mop sauce in the last hour every 15 minutes to develop a deep lacquer.
  6. Once tender, remove the ribs from the smoker and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Cut the limes in half and squeeze all of the juice all over the ribs. Sprinkle with Jacobsen Black Garlic Salt. Serve with any remaining black garlic sauce on the side.


Our signature Flake Finishing Salt is the product that put us on the map. Hand-harvested from the cold and pristine waters of Netarts Bay on the Oregon Coast, our Flake Finishing Salt has bright salinity and a delicate crunch. Use it to finish savory and sweet dishes alike. Add to sliced steaks and roasts, sprinkle on eggs, finish grilled vegetables, top baked goods, or add to anything that strikes you. One of our favorite applications: sprinkled over warm baguette with butter and Bee Local honey.

MRSP $12


A flavor bomb of sweetness matched with savory notes of caramelized garlic, our Black Garlic Salt enriches the earthy flavors of sautéed mushrooms, enlivens any preparation of duck (CLICK HERE for Recipe), and adds and unexpected depth to a classic tomato salad.

MSRP $12


Blending the classic, fiery habanero bite with a fruity and subtle smokiness, our Jacobsen Habanero Salt adds spice and zip to grilled sweet corn, pork carnitas, or summer melon, and will elevate a dessert like watermelon sorbet. It's also a unique and spicy addition to cocktails.

MSRP $12


We partnered with Traeger Grills to combine 100% natural wood fire smoke with our pure sea salt. Jacobsen Cherrywood Smoked Salt combines delicate smoky notes are perfect with cured or grilled salmon, pulled pork (CLICK HERE for Recipe), simple green salads, or peaches with creme fraiche.

MSRP $13


Our NEW Bee Local Smoked Honey Sauce is an irreplaceable condiment and powerful weapon in your culinary arsenal. Smoky, sweet, and addictive, it's good on just about anything. We take our sustainably-produced Bee Local honey, cold-smoke it, infuse the smoked honey with Lapsang Souchong (smoked tea), and then add a touch of apple cider vinegar for balance. The result is one of the most distinctive and addictive products we've created to date. 

Our Bee Local Smoked Honey Sauce brings a sweet, smoky, and savory boost to your favorite foods: all manner of BBQ (pulled pork shoulder, ribs, brisket), tacos, cheeses, roasted vegetables, fried chicken, and more.

MSRP $12


Our NEW Bee Local Hot Honey is an irreplaceable condiment and powerful weapon in your culinary arsenal. What separates our Hot Honey from all others is our commitment to the quality of our core ingredients. Unlike our competitors, we start with single-origin, sustainably-produced Bee Local honey. No other Hot Honey product uses this type of premium honey as the foundation. From there we infuse the honey with Scorpion Chili Peppers (one of the world's hottest yet most flavorful peppers), and then balance it all out with a touch of vinegar.

Our Bee Local Hot Honey brings a sweet, spicy, and addictive kick to your favorite foods: Fried Chicken, Ribs, Pizza, all manner of BBQ, Roasted Vegetables, Cheese, Fruit, Cocktails and Ice Cream.

MSRP $12


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