A barbecue is very traditional for a Labor Day weekend, this year I decided to do tri-tip. Tri-tip is a very popular beef roast to barbecue in California—popularized in Oakland and Santa Maria in the 1950’s. The problems with this cut—it’s thick fat cap and odd shape—leads much of the rest of the world to slice this roast into steaks. The Hispanic world—of which California is really still a part of—knows better. Done right it is flavorful, moist and juicy—of course done wrong it is carbonized, dry and chewy.