My first bbq competition

Discussion in 'Upcoming/Recurring BBQ Competitions (KCBS or Other' started by jamesdouglas, Jun 14, 2014.

  1. jamesdouglas

    jamesdouglas Fire Starter

    Hi all. Need some advise.

    So a local brewery is going to let me start my own bbq biz under their business since they have all the equipment and needed licenses.
    Anyway, to get our the word out we are entering a local bbq competition next weekend.

    I have never done one before. What should I expect?
    Anything I should lookout for?

    Also it will be chicken, pork ribs, pork butt and brisket. I have not yet smoked a brisket. :( haha.
    Any tips?
  2. knifebld

    knifebld Smoking Fanatic

    Hi James,

    I missed this post last month but was very curious on how you did. I am planning on entering the competition ring next spring and would also love to hear some tips and stories.

  3. jamesdouglas

    jamesdouglas Fire Starter

    It was a great experience.
    Competition bbq is definitely different than what I do on my own. I never use sauce on my Q...and refused to at the competition. However, everyone at competition does. And from what I can tell is expected.
    Having never done a brisket before I got 3rd in the category. Didn't place in any other categories. But learned alot. So it was all great.
    Made some new good friends.
    My only suggestion is to have a team mate or 2. Most of the teams had three or 4 people. I was on my own. And not only did I have to focus on the competition I had to smoke 14 butts for vending for a friend's business.
    By myself I had two 45min naps during 27 hours of smoking. Haha.
    Just go in to have fun and an attitude to learn. It will be a great time.
    remmy700p likes this.
  4. jamesdouglas

    jamesdouglas Fire Starter

    My third place brisket
  5. jamesdouglas

    jamesdouglas Fire Starter

  6. I am a rookie at smoking.  I bought my a OKJ long horn a few months back, I seasoned it, noticed a lot of smoke escaping from the lid, and bought a kit to seal it.   that worked to keep smoke from escaping.  I have a convection plate ordered from horizon to maintain temp across the cooking surface.  I have a cook in 2 weeks of 10 beer chickens, 2 shoulders, and a brisket... hoping to feed 60-70 ppl with that, but next year theres a Q comp. in Nashville, tn that I want to enter, and all tips would be great.  I watched the bbq pitmasters on Netflix to get and idea of what to expect.  I know its all trial and error.  I want to do chicken thighs as my main meat. any advice would be much appreciated.  this is my first post, so if I posted in the wrong category I apologize, I just read the comp bbq as the headline   
  7. knifebld

    knifebld Smoking Fanatic

    Wow sounds like you had a blast James!

    Were you competing as an amateur or a pro?? In Canada, or at least the South Eastern part, if you compete as amateur, you are typically given two racks of ribs and two whole chickens and must turn out 6 portions of each. Briskets and butts are reserved for the pros ;)

    Nice work on the brisket...must be a nice feeling to have placed 3rd on your first comp...with a brisket nonetheless! LOL

    You planning to keep on competing?
  8. jamesdouglas

    jamesdouglas Fire Starter

    Thanks. Yeah I think I will compete against if I find something local.
    Yeah it was cool. They announced chicken ribs and pork and I didn't get a call out. Figured my day was done. Was surprised with 3rd on Brisket. Lol.

    I learned some things that I can take forward...With both competition and my own bbq. They really are different beasts.
  9. bbquy

    bbquy Smoke Blower

    You got me jealous James!! I have my first KCBS competition coming up on Columbus day weekend and can't wait!  I'm with you on having a few assistants!  This weekend I'm doing a mock competition in backyard just to get the feel of it.

    I have a question, what method did you use to put out your hot coals at the end of the competition? I read somewhere that sand works well.

    I'll try to post pics after the competition. By the way, your brisket look awesome!
  10. jamesdouglas

    jamesdouglas Fire Starter

    How did the mock run go?

    By the time I was done cooking and I was ready to leave the coals had already died down. The sand does sound like a good idea.

    Good luck with the competition.
  11. bbquy

    bbquy Smoke Blower

    Thanks James!
  12. gibsorz

    gibsorz Smoke Blower

    James sounds great. Good placing for a first competition cook on the brisket.

    I can see sauce on chicken and ribs, with a light finisher on pork, kind of playing with a disadvantage in competition without using one. You definitely don't want something overpowering, more like accentuating the meat. But sauced brisket in my experience is pretty rare. So with a level playing field you killed it, Congrats.

    I am looking to compete, but wasn't in the cards this year. A single WSM seem to cut it at all the competitions I've seen. Don't know how I would turn in chicken and ribs before brisket and butt.
  13. bbquy

    bbquy Smoke Blower

    The mock run went very well until the very end when we got a torrential down pour! It was quite difficult getting the turn in box done without it getting wet but we did get it done. It just wasn't the prettiest thing!  LOL!

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