3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt or coarse sea salt
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 well-trimmed 2 1/2- to 2 3/4-pound tri-tip beef roast.
For the charcol or gas grill you will need 3 cups wood chips, soaked in water 1 hour and drained.
For the wood grill/smoker - a fire box of coals and some good green smoking wood!
Blend thyme leaves, garlic cloves, dried oregano, and coarse salt in mini processor until garlic is finely chopped. With processor running, gradually add lemon juice, then olive oil. Season herb sauce to taste with pepper and transfer to bowl. This can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Bring to room temperature before using.
Sprinkle roast generously on both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bring meat to room temperature by letting stand at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours before grilling.
Prepare barbecue/grill (medium-high heat).
If using gas grill:
Wrap wood chips in foil; pierce foil all over with fork. Remove top grill rack, place foil packet directly on burner, and replace grill rack. Place roast over packet and grill uncovered 6 minutes (wood in foil will begin to smoke). Turn roast over. Move to spot on grill where heat is indirect and medium-hot. Cover grill and cook until thermometer inserted into thickest part of roast registers 128°F to 135°F for medium-rare, turning roast occasionally, about 13 minutes.
If using charcoal grill:
Sprinkle wood chips over coals and place roast on rack. Cook roast uncovered 7 minutes. Turn roast over. Move roast to spot on grill where heat is indirect and medium-hot. Cover grill and cook until thermometer inserted into thickest part of roast registers 128°F to 135°F for medium-rare, turning roast occasionally, about 13 minutes.
If using a wood burning smoker:
Transfer roast to platter. Let stand 10 minutes. Thinly slice roast across grain. Serve, passing sauce separately.