Blues, Brews, (Jews) and Ques

Volunteering at a barbecue fundraiser? You had me at barbecue.  

The event was a chance to help the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina, which is always a good thing. Even better, Porky, Ol’ Hickory and I were slated to help with the food prep.  

The food bank site billed the event as Blues, Brew & Que, but we preferred the plurals in Blues, Brews and Ques, as the logo had it, since both of us BBQ Jews were in attendance. By any name, it was a pretty cool scene.  

still life with barbecue

We got to chat with the competitors taking part in the morning ‘cue competition. That included the winning chef, Fred Woodard of Smokey W’s, who specializes in whole hogs.   

Orange County Cookers and Mark Johnson were the runners up and we were excited to learn that they’ll be taking part in the shoulders cooking competition at Hillsborough Hog Day next weekend.  

FWIW, both smoked on BQ Grills, the Rolls Royce, er, F-250 of the barbecue world. Speaking of which, that was the truck of choice in the DAP parking lot.  

The competition was officially sanctioned by NC Pork Council, who provided the hogs. Unfortunately, all but one team cooked with propane. All of the competitors’ barbecue was sold as fundraising sandwiches, and I’m guessing the lack of wood might have had something to do with the quality of the ‘cue I had at the event.    

Still, it was a good time. When we left, the renovated Durham Athletic Park was bumping, as the the blues were in full swing. But one thing that gave me the blues was the startling discovery that ribs are deemed superfluous at these events.  

Given the time constraints, contestants didn’t bother with the ribs. Some competitors gave them away and some–shockingly–even tossed them in the trash. That was especially upsetting for this Rib Rabbi.  

— 

Bonus Question: How many contestants does it take to shred pork?  

Answer: 

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7 Responses

  1. All but one cooked on propane……AND these people are actually grinding the bbq! Holy hemorrhoids, Batman! An art is being lost!!!

    BBQ is not bbq without the wood coals and the “clop, clop, clop” of cleavers whittling away at a wooden chopping block.

    Sad, truely sad.

  2. I tend to agree, but I think of competitive cooking as a different beast. But it was sad, for sure.

    In talking to the competitors, they hinted that they switched to propane because it’s so much easier, but also because they’re competitive. They want to win these cookouts and–the judges deserve some blame here–gas grilling seem to win.

  3. Don’t blame the judges…blame the contests. As long as they allow gas it won’t stop. We need competitions that only allow wood or charcoal.

  4. That’s a good idea bbqguru. It’d be interesting to see how many competitors would show up to such a contest. Folks in Lexington are thinking about starting a cooking competition, maybe they’ll be the first in the state to specify coals only.

  5. That’s a good idea bbqguru. It’d be interesting to see how many competitors would show up to such a contest. Folks in Lexington are thinking about starting a cooking competition, maybe they could be the first in the state to specify coals only. Any readers know anyone in Lexington who could make this happen?

  6. [...] Comments Porky LeSwine on The Jointsbbqtom on The JointsPorky LeSwine on Blues, Brews, (Jews) and QuesPorky LeSwine on Blues, Brews, (Jews) and QuesJ. Galliher on BBQ Jew’s View: The Pit [...]

  7. [...] ribs don't hold a place of any real importance in North Carolina barbecue culture (sorry Rib Rabbi, but it's true), I still didn't hesitate to sign up when offered a coveted judge's [...]

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