From parking lot to market: Up In Smoke BBQ

Photographer: Emily Mallis

Moving up from the trailer

 

For years, Marc and Alanna McMullan operated Up In Smoke BBQ out of a trailer in parking lots. Fortunately for fans of the McMullan’s smoked and savory meats, the duo’s delicious barbecue is much easier to find these days.

Up In Smoke BBQ moved into Midtown Harrisburg’s Broad Street Market in March and has been flourishing ever since. While you can certainly make the argument that the stand’s immediate success is linked to the McMullans’ top-grade choices of meat, the bigger reason is Marc’s passionate cooking style.

What began as a hobby in barbecuing for friends and family has come full circle as a business – a professional life most folks just dream about.

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“I enjoy the process and the fine details that make the difference between one man’s barbecue and another’s,” Marc says. “It just kind of kept snowballing into something bigger and bigger, so I just went with it.”

Although Marc offers all the usual barbecue fare on the menu at Up In Smoke, you aren’t likely to get the BBQ master to pony up any of his secrets. Where he gets his meat is about as far as you’ll get.

McMullan takes pride in choosing the best cuts of meat. His beef is Grade A Black Angus from Creekstone Farms in Montana, which is guaranteed fresh within 24 hours. His pork products come from Groff’s Meat Market in Elizabethtown, where he chose to use a Berkshire hog.

“People tell me these are the largest ribs they have seen,” McMullan says. “I used to do competition barbecue. When you’re in it once, you just can’t lower your standards. I have to go where I can get the best cuts of meat, and I won’t settle for anything less.”

Ribs, brisket, pulled pork and sausage – it’s all smoked prior to arriving at the market. Brisket sandwiches run $8, while chicken and pork sandwiches are $6. Ribs are only sold on Saturdays and go for $12 per half rack. Sides fall between $2 and $3 and include corn bread, cole slaw, baked mac and cheese, baked beans and green leaf salads.

And although the McMullans have only been in the Broad Street Market for just shy of six months, change is already on the way for Up In Smoke BBQ. Marc currently smokes out of his trailer, but indoor smokers and a charcoal grill are being specially manufactured to be installed in this month. Marc also plans to start delivery service in the fall and winter months.

In addition, Up In Smoke BBQ is available for catering events, and Marc regularly attends the Third in the Burg food truck event.

“It’s an exciting time for us and I’m just enjoying where it’s all headed,” Marc says. “People love their barbecue, and we want to be the best around for that.”

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• 1233 North Third Street, Harrisburg; 645-7939
• Thursday and Friday, 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m.


 

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Posted in Dining Scene, Eat – Harrisburg

Anthony Burkhart is a freelance writer for Fly magazine. He has a B.A. in Journalism and tailgating from Penn State University, and is working on his honorary Ph.D. in world travel. He still takes along one disposable camera on every overseas trip. Previously a newspaper sportswriter, he now enjoyably works during the daytime as a marketing copywriter. When he's not planning the next worldwide adventure, he enjoys good beer, better food and Philly sports. The first two don't let him down.

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