Here’s a quick tip if you’re planning on smoking some meat soon: Instead of soaking wood chips in water, try a flavoured liquid like beer, wine, or fruit juice. This will give your food more complexity.
The LA Times notes:
The liquid will infuse the chips with flavour as they soak, giving the food more depth and dimension as it smokes. Try adding a little apple juice for light and fruity notes, perhaps a little red wine to add some spice notes. A touch of rum added to the soaking liquid can lend a nice hint of caramel when smoking something delicate.
You can even add the drained liquid from the soaked chips to the drip pan and really ramp up the flavour, whether you’re using a dedicated smoker or a DIY stovetop smoker.
Test Kitchen tips: Flavoring wood chips for smoking [Los Angeles Times]