I have a number of books on que, and a couple that are exclusively about ribs, but I can't seem to get my head around a few things, which I hope some of you in the 'BBQ Belt' might be able to clarify for me.
Obviously, up here in the Great White North, they are not packaging spare/side ribs solely for bbq, and therefore we get many different cuts. Occasionally you will see a 'true' St. Louis cut spare, which is what most que'ers would be seeking (I would imagine), or else a full slab, which I also encounter on the odd occasion. However, in most cases, what we are sold is a slab with the centre cut removed (this piece they sell seperately as 'Chinese sweet and sour rib'; a 1.5-2" strip, a foot long and priced double what the regular rack is). Also, almost exclusively, this centre-cut-removed rack is packaged laying on top of the breast/chine(?) bone piece, which is somewhat meaty, but irregularly shaped and not very attractive i.e. evenly spaced bones for an attractive easy-to-handle gnawing rib piece when cut. I guess what i'm askin' through all of this, is whether this is what you guys in bbq-savy places are getting as well, or are we dealing with grocers not cutting meat for the average Egger/bbq'er? Car Wash Mike in St. L, Mickey T in the Windy City area, Smokey in Atl and others in the BBQ Belt, what do you see at the butcher counter???