Many brisket fans want to see a smoke ring, although it adds little to the taste. I have a 15yo Smokette and it delivers a tender and great flavored brisket to this day, but it doesn't create a smoke ring (without help) and it doesn't render all of the fat like a 100% wood fired BBQ cooker. For an authentic smoke ring: Before seasoning, generously rub "Mortons Tender Quick" a fine grind tenderizing salt over entire brisket. Leave Tender Quick on 10-15 minutes max for 1/4 to 3/8" ring. Any longer you stand a chance of getting a smoke ring to the core. Wash brisket thoroughly & dry before seasoning, you'll notice the meat is a little darker after this brining. Doesn't change the taste at all. As far as trimming fat: I only trim the deckel fat before smoking, the hard lump between point and flat. For my friends that are squeamish about fat I'll trim before serving, it's darn easy while the brisket is hot. Personally I like a little fat, it's full of flavor.