Tin Rooster at Turning Stone's Exit 33 serves up some of the best Southern Style BBQ in Central New York.  But what's the secret? Chef Joseph took us back to see where all the magic happens.


You won't find any frozen food at the Tin Rooster.  Everything is made from scratch everyday.  From the campfire baked beans and cornbread to the ribs, brisket and pulled pork.  All the meat is prepped with special sauces and seasonings, placed in the smoker, then made to order on a wood grill in the kitchen.  The wings and sweet tea are even cooked in the smoker.

I did find out the secret sauce on the meat has mustard, white vinegar and pickle juice. However I couldn't get anyone to divulge the ratio. The special seasoning has 22 ingredients, and good luck trying to figure that out.


The meat is so tender.  One of the secrets is the removal of skin on the ribs, a step most restaurants overlook.  I didn't even know ribs had skin.  Once the skin is removed, the sauce and seasonings are liberally rubbed all over the meat.  It marinades overnight before it's placed in the smoker.


The end result is meat that falls off the bone, even the chicken wings, which I don't usually like.  Tin Rooster's wings are the best I've ever had.  Must be because they aren't fried.

I don't like sweet tea either, but the Tin Rooster tea is amazing.  I think I drank 5 or 6 glasses when I was there.  Who would think to put sweet tea in a smoker.  Only Chef Joe, who's response was always 'why not.'  Why not indeed.

Take a walk through the Tin Rooster kitchen with Chef Joe and I to see where the magic happens.