Strong Smoky Undesirable Taste
A: That was the chemical known as creosote which has a somewhat burny taste and numbs the lips and tongue upon contact. This is usually the result of green wood, not enough air flow into and out of the smoker, using only wood in too small of a smoker or a combination of the three.
Unless you have a fairly large smoker then, in spite of what it says on the bag of hickory chunks, it really needs to be used in addition to lump charcoal.
Use lump charcoal to get the fire going and get the smoker to the desired temperature, then add wood chunks on top of the coals for smoke or you can place them in a smoke box for even better results.
I like to use wood chips in smaller smokers wrapped up in a big piece of aluminum foil with some holes poked in the top and laid right on top of the coals. It will start smoking pretty quickly and you can have another one ready to put on when that one stops smoking.
Keep applying smoke until the meat reaches about 140 degrees at which point you just keep applying heat with the lump charcoal until the meat reaches the desired level of doneness.