Here in Texas oak and mesquite are pretty much staples for smoking and
grilling. As you know, the piss smell will leave the oak with a year
or so of seasoning.
Some folks don't like mesquite, but I like it as a mix myself, in with
charcoal or lump. It is also great to grill chicken, sausage, steaks
or burgers with it as the meat isn't over the smoke of the mesquite
all that long, but enough to give it a distinct flavor.
I use white, red, live oak, etc. when I have a long smoke for butts or
brisket. If you like a mellow smoke, use just a few fist size chunks
for the first three or four hours at least, and more if you want a
better bark on your victim.
I fill my custom charcoal basket with about 7-8 pounds of charcoal,
and intersperse about 4 or five fist size pieces in the charcoal and
fire it off. As the charcoal burns down it will reach the wood and
ignite it as it burns providing a most satisfactory smoke, burning
slowly and evenly.
Properly seasoned oak of any variety I have tried makes a mellow
smoke, with more character than hickory or cherry. A great many
professional competitors use oak as their smoking medium in
If you are a fan of lump, then no doubt you have used at least some
oak in the mix unless you made it yourself.