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First gig and need some advice

Discussion in 'Catering & Large Group Gatherings' started by Low and Slow 1, Oct 3, 2018.

  1. I just started a BBQ company and my first gig is going to be a soccer tournament with about 250 kids and their parents. I am going to be one of 2 food vendors with the other selling pizza. I am only going to be making ribs and pulled pork.

    I am figuring with 250 kids there will probably be 3.5 times that amount of people there so about 875 people. probably 80% will buy food and hopefully 75% of those will buy BBQ so about 525 people. Couple of questions:

    1) I am planning on serving 3 ribs and a bag of chips for $7 (4 orders per rack). Do you think 50% of people would buy ribs? Then 50% of people with pulled pork with 1/4 pound of meat an chips for $7. SO i would need about 65 racks of ribs and about 65lbs of pulled pork...Does this sound right?

    2) My smoker holds about 30 racks of ribs or 30 butts at a time. I was planning on cooking the butts first, pulling them the day before and then refrigerating them and eventually warming them back up on the smoker in pans when I get to the event (also have countertop food warmers). Does this sound ok?

    3) As I need to make multiple batches of ribs, how should I cook and hold the ones that I cook before the event? Cook them, put them in pans foil wrapped, put in cambros and bring to the event, then finish with a sauce on smoker at the event and serve?

    I would love to hear from anybody who has some ideas or has done something similar in the past. Thank you guys in advance for helping out. This BBQ company has been a dream of mine for a while and I finally went ahead and did it and now I want to make it work!
  2. fivetricks

    fivetricks Smoking Fanatic

    I think your prospective buyer percentages are way high. I'd be ok with it, but I like lots of leftovers :-)
  3. Question. Are you doing a pulled pork plate or are you serving on buns as a sandwich. Can't say 100% for sure but I am guessing you would get more sales from the sandwich style.

  4. Yes I was planning on sandwiches.
  5. Ok. First off let me say I don't and never have done that for a living or gotten paid to cook at an event so I may be off base. However when I go to events that have food trucks or caterers etc. what I notice most is things that are easy to eat, like sandwiches sell really well, especially if there are lots of kids. I am just guessing but I would think that would put the pulled pork as a bigger seller for you. Like I said though I am far from an expert so I know my answer is not the most informative and you should probably look for more of a consensus on this.
  6. I might forgo the ribs alltogether. I'm not sure what kind of soccer tournament you're going to be working, but from what I remember pulled pork sandwiches and sausage wraps were great sellers. Ease of consumption is very critical and kids go for what they know. Perhaps save the art of pork ribs for a more appropriate occasion, especially if it complicates your smoke workflow
  7. Gwanger

    Gwanger Smoking Fanatic

    I now cook my butts and ribs a day ahead and 2-3 hrs b4 serving wrap in foil and warm at 225* and prepare finishing sauce and bbq sauce and then finish on grill or smoker to allow sauce to carmelize.
  8. Do you pull the pork when it is originally cooked or wait to reheat and then pull at the event?
  9. Gwanger

    Gwanger Smoking Fanatic

    I would pull at event b4 serving time and mix in finishing sauce and keep warm
  10. hardcookin

    hardcookin Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If it was me I would do pulled pork,pulled chicken or hot sausage sammys.
    For me ribs take up to much space.
    I honestly don't know if ribs would be a big seller or not.
  11. gmc2003

    gmc2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    If it were me I would pull after the original cook and reheat at the event. Also skip doing the ribs you don't want people tossing rib bones all over the place. Pulled chicken is also a crowd pleaser.

  12. jbellard

    jbellard Smoking Fanatic

    I would do pulled pork sandwiches and smoked chicken wings.
    Easy to hold and eat.

    I think your. Inverse of folks that are potential customers is a bit high as well. If there’s any way to advertise before the day of that would probably be a huge help to have folks ready to buy
  13. Joe L

    Joe L Newbie

    So, how did it go?