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Drum Smokers and my first competition

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I did my first BBQ competition, The Evergreen State Championship at Alki Beach in Seattle WA. Sept. 22-23. I used my homemade Ugly Drum Smokers for the four meats. I did this solo and my goal was to have fun and NOT finish in LAST PLACE! I accomplished that and finished 28th out of 34 teams!
My drums held steady temps and just Rocked! I brought a WSM but didn't fire it up. I'll be practicing and looking forward to next season here in the Pacific Northwest!

Midnight Ramblers
post #2 of 19
Congrats on your non-last place finish! Food looks great, glad you had fun!

Thanks for the Q-view!
post #3 of 19
Hey...well done! I did my first local comp this summer, and beat last place too LOL... It's a bit nerve wracking. Only did ribs there- called the Orion Boatclub rib-off...I'm gonna look for a more complete contest next year, and WIN this one here.. :{)
post #4 of 19
Congrats Brian -

I like the look of those ugly smokers. Bet they work good too! I headed to my first comp to help BBPitstop today. I have no idea what these things are like should be interesting. I finally get to meet another family member fro the forum - I'm so excited! I guess figuring out what the judges like is the tough part. I would think it would be different depending on what part of the country your in. Regional tatses ans that sort of thing ... You did good hon!
post #5 of 19

Mighty Good Lookin' 'Q' Ya Got There!...

Hi Brian!...Congrats!...Awesome lookin' turn-in boxes there!...Ya did good!...and...congrats too on the non-last place win!!...PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif

BTW...Nice touch with the 'Hazardous Material' tape!...I mean...Everybody that knows 'Q' knows that Good 'Q' IS hazardous!!...

It'll make ya HURT yourself, it's so good!!...icon_mrgreen.gif

Congrats again, and keep up the good work!!...

Until Later...
post #6 of 19
The way those boxes looked with the meat I'm amazed you didn't finish higher! Real nice job! Debi is right about regional taste and finding out what the judges are looking for. Where I live they started having a bbq cook school so that you learn all about that. We cooked a hog, butt and ribs and had judges come out and had a little contest. We learned so much about what to do and what not to do. Another tip is to become a judge and actually judge a few contests so you get a feeling of what's going on. Most of the good cookers are also judges and do both really well. Hope this helps.
post #7 of 19
It's not "what the judges like". If the judges are doing what they are supposed to be doing they are looking for KCBS (or whatever sanctioning body) standards. If they are not doing that they are not judging.
post #8 of 19
Congrats Brian. Doing a competition alone is a major feat in itself!
I'll have my 1st drum complete this afternoon and season it. The second is started. I know some folks who use nothing else and do really well in competition.
post #9 of 19
It's not "what the judges like". If the judges are doing what they are supposed to be doing they are looking for KCBS (or whatever sanctioning body) standards. If they are not doing that they are not judging.

If that was the case then all judges would give the same score to a contestant for a given catagory.
post #10 of 19
That's great,Mike. I want to see pics of that drum smoker. Thinking of making me one too.I need ideas. I got a question though. When you use the drum and run out of fuel (charcoal,lump...etc) how do you refuel without having to break down the whole unit(meat,racks...etc).
post #11 of 19
great job& looks mighty tasty.PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
post #12 of 19
If they are made right they will go 10-12 hours on one load of charcoal, some are reported to go up to 16 hours. About anything should be smoked to pefection in that time. Otherwise, yep, you have to tear down. Pics coming i a few days as I get it done and play with it.
post #13 of 19
Brain, your entries look nice and you went in with the right attitude. Need to evaluate what went wrong in the judges eye and work on that. IMO a sign of a great cook is one that know his/her audience and prepares the food in accordance.

Another summer is only 6 months away and time to hone your competition skills.
post #14 of 19
You are correct. If you take the KCBS judging class you will see that the 6 scores at a 6 judge table should be very close to each other. If there is a wide variance in scores something is wrong.
Competition judges are not there to judge "what they like". Take the class and become a judge.
post #15 of 19
Mike, In the context that your talking about I would agree. If I go to the upstate and sauce my pork with a vinegar sauce it won't be graded as high as if I was in the low country. I guess that's what I ment....you still have to know what works in what part of the state or region to win and score high.
post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 


Here are a few pics of the Alki Comp.

This was a non KCBS sanctioned event with 1 hour turn ins.

I have taken the KCBS CBJ class taught by Jim Minion and judged 2 comps to date. I plan on taking a PNWBA Judging class next season or sooner!
My judging scores were all over the board from high to middle of the road. Taken the Paul Kirk and DrBBQ cooking classes so I have an idea of what to expect, I can't argue with the judging, it was first time nerves on my part.
post #17 of 19
Tasty lookin entries you had there. Man I would have a hard time judging a comp. Everything always looks so damn good!
post #18 of 19
Awesome job that is a major thing to do. It is not easy doing a competition let alone by yourself.

Great job
post #19 of 19
WTG Brian.....Second what Cheech said. Gotta start somewhere. I have my wife and boys 12,16 talked into helping out next year. Just need to find something close to home. So far they have liked everything that has come off the smoker. By the way. was that really a postal drop box given a second and much more appreciative live as a smoker???? Pretty niffty reincarnation.

All the best in your future comps

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