Main Dish

Grilled Baby Back Ribs with Cherry Barbecue Sauce

Ridge Lytton Springs

650 Lytton Springs Road
Healdsburg, CA 95448

These mouthwatering baby back ribs are seasoned with chef Jesse's signature dry rub, spritzed with sherry, and slathered with a sweet and tangy cherry barbecue sauce. They're perfect with your favorite Ridge Zinfandel.

  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 5 pounds baby back ribs
  • 1/2 cup medium-dry sherry
Prepare a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill. If using a charcoal grill, when the coals are covered with light gray ash, push them to opposite sides of the grill and set a disposable drip pan in the center. If using a gas grill, turn off the center burners.

In a bowl, stir together the sugar, salt, dry mustard, Chinese five-spice powder, pepper, cinnamon and cloves. Sprinkle the mixture over the ribs. Pour the sherry into a spray bottle.

Place the ribs, bone side down, on the grill grate above the drip pan and away from the coals. Close the grill lid and cook for 30 minutes. Spray the ribs with some of the sherry. Close the lid and grill for 30 minutes more. Move the ribs around on the grill (but keep them bone side down) and spray again with sherry. Close the lid and cook until the meat is tender, about 30 minutes more, replenishing the coals as necessary.

Transfer the ribs to a baking sheet and spread the coals out evenly. Brush the cherry barbecue sauce (recipe follows) on both sides of the ribs. Place the ribs directly over the fire (high heat on a gas grill) and cook, turning once, until glazed, about 1 minute per side. 

Transfer the ribs to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Cut between the bones and arrange the ribs on a platter. Serve extra barbecue sauce on the side.

Cherry Barbecue Sauce

  • 1/2 pound pitted cherries (fresh, frozen or canned)
  • 1/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1/4 cup Zinfandel
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 green onion, white portion only, minced
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
In a small saucepan, combine the cherries, vinegar, rum, wine, tomato paste, lime juice, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, ginger, garlic, green onion and water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 1 1/4 cups, about 15 minutes. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.

Ridge Lytton Springs

650 Lytton Springs Road
Healdsburg, CA 95448