Grill masters love their barbecue sauce and every great barbecue cook has its own signature sauce. A typical barbecue sauce is easy to make, but it is an important part of every barbecue as it can make or break the barbecue. You should also know that every big barbecue region has its own typical sauce. Most traditional barbecue sauces will use tomato, mustard or vinegar as a base and come in all consistencies, from thick and sticky to thin and runny. There are also mopping sauces and finishing sauces.
People order their barbecue wet or dry. If it is wet this means that mopping sauce was applied all over the meat while cooking. If dry then the sauce was not applied while cooking and the eater may add finishing sauce while eating the barbecue. Barbecue sauce can be used before, during or after cooking, however, the cook needs to be aware that sauce with tomato and/or sugar can burn easily during the cooking process and have a negative effect on the taste of the meat.
A grill master may use sauces from each of the three main types (tomato, mustard, and vinegar) so that he/she can cook to order and satisfy more pallets. Usually, a grill master will start with the three basic sauces and experiment with different ingredients until he/she finds what they like and then has their own signature sauce.
It is hard to mess up a barbecue unless it is undercooked or burned, so experimenting with a sauce will only make it better. A grill master may continuously work on his sauce and may have several varieties to be used depending on the side dishes and/or event being catered.