Serves 4


  • 4 racks of pork side ribs
  • 2 cans Sapporo beer
  • ½ cup light Japanese soya sauce
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup rice wine vinegar
  • ½ cup barbeque sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp cracked pepper
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp sambal oelek
  • ½ lemon sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • 2 tbsp minced chives
  • 1 cup crème fraiche
  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard
  • Lemon juice to taste


  • Preheat oven to 375F. Arrange ribs meaty side down in a roasting pan, preferably in a single layer. Combine all the other ingredients in a bowl, stir well and pour over ribs. Cover the pan tightly with foil and transfer into the oven. After 45 minutes, carefully remove the foil, turn the ribs and reseal. After an hour, check on the ribs for doneness: the meat should be just beginning to pull away from the bone.
  • Transfer the ribs to a clean roasting pan. Strain the braising liquid into a large measuring cup. Pour enough liquid over the ribs to submerge them completely. (although the ribs can be finished immediately, their flavour will be better if you set them aside, covered in the braising liquid  over night of for several days) Let the remain braising liquid sit until the fat separates completely, then skim or pour off. Transfer the liquid to a saucepan and reduce by half until the liquid coats the back of a spoon.
  • Preheat grill on it’s lowest setting, brush rack with oil. Remove the ribs from the braising liquid (discarding the liquid) and transfer them to the grill, meat side down. Brush them with the reduced braising liquid, turn and brush again. Continue turning and glazing, watching that the sugar in the sauce does not burn, until the ribs are heated through and nicely coloured.
  • Cut the ribs and arrange on a platter, drizzle with extra sauce, season with salt and pepper, sprinkle chives and serve with ramekins of crème fraiche combined with mustard and a few drops of lemon juice.
  • This same recipe can be used for pork back ribs, beef ribs, and even beef short ribs. Each will require a longer braising time than the side ribs. Test for doneness the same way. Heat larger ribs gently in their braising liquid before placing them on the grill.  Pair with a Zinfandel or Viognier and enjoy!