A smoked delight – Bourbon Smoked Brisket!

I’ve been smoking food for many years and I love trying new combinations of wood, interesting smoker designs and forgotten cuts of meat. For this recipe I’ve tried to use my Alfa pizza oven as a hot smoker and a classic brisket was the perfect test. It really absorbed some of the oak and bourbon aroma whilst it slow-cooked and I will definitely try it again. Pizza ovens cook at incredibly high temperatures but the solid thermal mass also makes them ideal for a low n slow cook once they store all that heat and radiate it back into the beef.


  1. Rub your brisket in oil, sugar, spices and seasoning and leave to sit overnight in the fridge. In the morning get it out of the fridge while you preheat your pizza oven until it reaches 300˚C.
  2. Allow to cool until it reaches 200˚C and then place your brisket onto a wire rack in a skillet and start cooking.
  3. Add chunks of oak bourbon barrel to the edge of the fire so it starts smoking every hour.
  4. Try to maintain a temperature of 130˚C in the oven for 7-8 hours. The way I do this is to light some wood outside of the oven and top it up with hot coals when the temperature starts to drop. Also use the door to regulate the internal temp of the oven.
  5. For the last hour wrap your beef in tin foil and then allow to rest for 30 mins. Slice thickly and serve with kraut and dill pickles

This dish was roasted in the Alfa Forni 5 Minuti. For more information and prices, click here.


  • 2 kg brisket
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp smoked sea salt
  • 1 tbsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
James Strawbridge