“Petesmeats” creator Peter Montgomery shares passion for cooking


Junior Peter Montgomery lights the flame for his grill. Montgomery started the Applications to Chemistry club to share his passion for cooking with other students. Photo by Luka Byrne.

By Yiyang Zhang

Charcoal smoke drifts through the air as junior Peter Montgomery throws a slab of his signature cut onto the grill. He’s been marinating the meat for hours, and it sizzles appetizingly as it slowly begins to brown.

To share his food and passion for cooking, Montgomery created the Applications to Chemistry club, known as Petesmeats, as well as an Instagram account, @petesmeats20, for people who are interested in learning more about cooking and grilling. Inspired by his older brother William (‘13), Montgomery started cooking in elementary school, and grilling is now one of his favorite pastimes.

“I cook all the time, and it’s not limited to meat,” Montgomery said. “Though it’s harder to cook junior year with a lot going on academically, I still try to make dinner three to four times a week, and if not, dessert.”

Montgomery brought his talents to Whitman for the first time this year, setting up his grill for the homecoming game tailgate and selling to students for $10 per two patties. Cooking at football game tailgates with his father throughout the years has taught him a lot and led to a successful profit of around $100 in two hours—enough to consider continuing at next year’s homecoming game, he said.

“The food was delicious because Peter spends days seasoning them so that they could be the best,” club member Luka Byrne said. “He really showed me that cooking is simple and anyone can just get to work in the kitchen to make the food they desire.”

Montgomery’s favorite meat to cook is ribs because it’s a 4-day process. He starts by boiling cut ribs in seasoning beer for six hours, then marinates them for two days in barbecue sauce. Finally, he smokes them for four hours on top of mesquite wood chips that have been soaked for six hours, Montgomery said.

“This way the ribs really get a woody smoked flavor to it,” Montgomery said. “It’s such a long process and that’s what’s so fun about it: there’s challenges, but it also has the biggest payoffs.”

Of everything he makes, desserts like pies are Montgomery’s favorite to whip up; he appreciates the fact that he can make them from scratch, from the process of kneading the dough to making the fillings.

As Petesmeats garnered more and more attention around school, Montgomery also designed t-shirts to advertise his food and Instagram account, an idea he attributes to his friend Sam White.

The pair started with a collaborative shirt for Petesmeats and Swite, White’s YouTube channel. Montgomery then came up with some more designs for fun, and ultimately began selling them as a way to advertise and make a greater profit, White said.

Though Montgomery believes his passion for cooking will last a lifetime, he doesn’t consider it a realistic career option.  

“I don’t anticipate to be a professional chef,” Montgomery said. “It’s just a useful life skill to have, especially going off to college, buying groceries and cooking is a lot cheaper.”