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Cherry wood vs. hickory

Sooner EggSooner Egg Posts: 578
edited 4:24PM in EggHead Forum
I've been seeing alot of posts where people opt for cherry wood, I've always used and liked hickory, now I'm wondering what the attraction to cherry it milder, sweeter, is it better for certain meats as opposed to hickory or is it just personal preference?


  • RipnemRipnem Posts: 5,511
    Fruit wood tends to be much milder as well as sweeter. Others will chime in about type o wood = type of meat. I use Apple for everything :)
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 23,017
    cherry seems to really add some color. i use 2/3 cherry to 1/3 hickory, or guava, or pecan on most low and slows with pork. its got a nice smokey but not to overpowering flavor to me, i dont know if i would say sweet like all the writeups say on fruit woods. sometimes with too much hickory i get a bitter taste and the cherry added to it seems to tone it down
  • FidelFidel Posts: 10,172
    All of the above. I like to mix it with a little hickory and/or pecan for pork, with oak for beef, and by itself on chicken.
  • RVHRVH Posts: 523
    Michael, we like to use cherry when cooking chicken. I tend to get a little heavy-handed with the smoke if I use hickory. On ribs we use a mix of hickory and cherry with very good results. It seems, at least to us, that you can get a lot more smoke from cherry before you cross over into the "hey, this is kind of bitter!" condition. If I used anything but hickory on steaks my wife would throw a hissy.

    also from Edmond, Oklahoma
  • TomM24TomM24 Posts: 1,364
    I'm the same as Vance but use mesquite on beef
  • skihornskihorn Posts: 600
    I am definitely one of the depends-on-the-type-of-meat guys. Generally I like stronger smoke for beef, milder for poultry or fish. Here are my preferences:

    Steak/hamburgers - hickory or mesquite

    poultry - pecan and apple mixture

    ribs - hickory and apple mixture

    fish - alder

    ham - apple

    vegetables/breads/pizza - cherry

    desserts - maple

    League City, TX
  • HaggisHaggis Posts: 998
    Hickory reminds me of going to Plimouth Plantation and watching the pretend Pilgrims cooking in their mud-and-wattle hovels. Cherry reminds me of going into my grandfather's near-boston second-level-down farmhouse basement where he lit up his pipe filled with cherry tobacco. I like them both but the cherry is more sophisticated . . . its what the Pilgrims became three hundred years later when they actually had a place they could hide from their wives.
  • Rib FanRib Fan Posts: 305
    I absolutely love the smell and taste of cherry. I call it my "base wood" and will mix other types (hickory, apple etc.) depending on what I am cooking. It adds a nice colour to the meat as well. I like the taste "finish" I get from Cherry. Someone said it is more "sophisticated" and I believe that as well. Sweet and not too overpowering...with a nice lingering finish. Kinda hard to explain taste though :)
  • I know you didn't ask about other woods ... But experiment! My friend at tri-county in Waldorf, MD suggested grape chips for pork and I've been a big fan ever since!
  • I know you didn't ask about other woods ... But experiment! My friend at tri-county in Waldorf, MD suggested grape chips for pork and I've been a big fan ever since!
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