Last week we had a large scale event catered by Back 40, based in Pleasanton. I don't know the details, but it must have been on the scale of 500-1000 served. Menu was rolls, tossed dressed salad, bbq beans, bbq chicken and brisket.
Chicken was not good, almost as if not smoked at all, or smoked too little with wet skin, but parts of the brisket were quite nice, tender juicy and beefy, with a good strong spice rub, not too salty. Sauce on the side, and the smoke ring was nearly a centimeter deep. Unfortunately, much of the brisket was tight, not as tender, though not really dried out or burnt. My impression is that this is fairly common with brisket. Similar flavor. Which makes me wonder, how much of bbq success is cut selection? If fattier briskets had been consistently chosen, would the product have been more consistent? Or is it something more subtle, like the amount of collagen surrounding the muscle fibers?
Also, any experiences with the restaurant(s)?