Chipotle and clove rubbed side ribs



This recipe is built for red wine!

We’re going to start off with pork side ribs. I prefer side ribs as the fat content and gelatinous richness is much higher then their back rib counterparts. After I remove the membrane from the ribs they’ll get a rub of chipotle, clove, brown sugar, garlic and black pepper.

I'll match these BBQ'd beauties up with something full bodied and sweet spice driven. The 2017 Merlot Petite Verdot from Inniskillin Wines is what I grabbed for the job and it is absolutely worth it! It’s every bit of what you would expect from a cool climate Merlot up front, backed up by increased structure and strength from the Verdot.

A beautiful hue of ruby, this wine shows notes of cocoa, black cherry, and sweet baking spices. It has a fairly long finish as the fruit transitions to ripe blackberries with a slight herbal freshness and soft vanilla.

There is some perceived residual sweetness on this wine, I’m thinking mainly from the vanilla notes, a sweet oak character and dark fruit intensity.

One thing that is important to keep in mind when pairing BBQ meats with red wine; if your bbq rub or sauce is spicy or on the sweeter side, it can be the kiss of death for a dry red wine. Too much spice will pull alcohol and acidity out of the wine, and too much sweetness can make the it seem astringent and acidically out of balance.

To compensate, you can either use a recipe that has a lower heat and sweet component (like this chipotle and clove rub), or (from a wine standpoint), choose a red that has some preserved sweetness or, even a wine with lower alcohol content.


A brilliant red wine, smoke, spice and pork fat... I'm in!




Chipotle and clove pork side ribs

Serves 6

3 racks pork side ribs, cleaned

1/4 cup red wine

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 tbsp. salt

3 tbsp. pureed chipotle peppers

2 tbsp. ground black pepper

2 tsp. ground clove

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup Red Wine Rib Glaze

In a large bowl, whisk together wine, sugar, salt, chipotle, black pepper, clove and garlic.

Rub the ribs, wrap, and allow to marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat your oven or smoker to 220 degrees Fahrenheit.

Transfer the ribs to your smoker or oven.

Cook the ribs for 4-6 hours or until just tender.

*If smoking, brush the ribs every hour with Red Wine Rib Glaze… I like to remove my ribs and wrap in butcher paper roughly ¾ of the way through the cook. Once wrapped, place back in the heat and continue smoking until finished.

*If cooking in the oven, combine 3 cups of chicken stock with 1 cup of rib glaze. Place the ribs into a roasting pan with the stock/glaze mixture. Cover with foil or a tight fitting lid before cooking the ribs.


Finish the ribs by brushing them with Red Wine Rib Glaze and placing back over a hot BBQ to caramelize.

Red Wine Rib Glaze

Makes roughly 2 cups

1 cup red wine

½ cup sugar or maple syrup

¼ cup soy sauce

¼ cup Dijon mustard

¼ cup Worcestershire

3 tbsp. salt

2 tbsp. Hungarian paprika


Whisk all ingredients together in a medium pot. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Simmer until the salt and sugar have completely dissolved.

Cool, refrigerate and store in an airtight container.

will keep for 2-3 week in the fridge.

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