Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Our First Competition

I can't believe I haven't gotten this post up before now...well I do know computer's USB ports are acting up and I can't download my own photos.  So I will share photos others took.
What a was so exciting, full of fun, nervousness, wonder and amazement.  I have to tell you BBQ folk are some wonderful, generous, eager to help others, social, fun-loving people.  We were welcomed with open arms from everyone we met.  Yes, it is a competition, but teams offered advise, help, tips, and lessons to all of us newbies.  They want everyone to do well.
I thought we were entering a small, kinda local competition only to find out some of the best BBQers in the nation were there...on both sides of us in fact. Talk about being nervous. But we worried for nothing, everyone was so supportive, friendly and helpful. There is so much more to competition BBQ than I ever expected.
Special thanks to R&R from the SLC area with our rib box and more. Your guys rock! Your encouragement, wisdom and friendship is truly appreciated.  Thanks for the IMBBQA banner too, we'll will fly it proudly everywhere we go.  Congrats on finishing so well, too. 
Tommy and Jennifer at Whiskey Ranch provided great help, tips, and more with boxes and brisket.  We got great scores on appearance thanks to you guys. 
Mike, you and your gang at AZBBQ threw a heck of an event. Thanks for making us feel so welcome. Can't wait for the next one!
Our self-designed and made smoker was quite a hit.  Other teams were coming over to check it out all during the event.  Timm and Chris should be proud of it for sure.  Many teams had made their own pits as well, there was one made from a Peterbuilt chrome fuel tank, and of course, large propane tanks are the material of choice.  Our Knaack construction site gang box is fairly unique to the BBQ world. 
We participated in People's Choice and got great compliments on our product.  We offered chopped pork and ribs.  Many folks came back for seconds, and I even saw a couple of third helpings in line.  Wish we knew how many would purchase tickets for this, we would have planned to cook more meat. 
Christy and Chris manned people's choice and were great with the crowds.  

We finished 27th out of 28 teams overall.  Was hoping to finish about mid-pack but then again, the caliber of teams was incredible. 
Chicken 26th...turned in legs, most use thighs...although ours were super tasty and moist, skin was crisp and delicious.
Ribs 24th...our best event and got compliments from other teams saying they should have scored much higher.
Pork 26th...tasty and a hit in peoples choice...gotta work on a sauce for that one though. 
Brisket 28th...gotta get the temp up for a more tender brisket, it was flavorful, just gotta get a more tender cook on it.
Oh, we got a 7th place for best booth too.  Even got to walk and get a ribbon for that.  Next year, watch out...I'm looking for 1st place on that one.
Timm and I are thankful for all the support from our families.  Scott, Christy and Chris drove up after work on Friday to participate and made it just in time for the midnight appetizer party.  Apparently, they were hungry...but you gotta try everything right.  My parents, brother and his son came to support up in our adventure into the BBQ world as well.  Thanks to all of them. 
We  stuck around on Sunday to see the backyard bbq...was hoping for more competitors on that one.  We should have cooked for peoples choice that day...lots of folks looking to eat some 'que.  We also took a ride on the train that day before the kids headed for home.  It was Christy's first train ride, the boys obviously loved it as well.  Timm and I stuck around for 5 more days enjoying the area.