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quarters69
05-08-2011, 05:51 PM
Wanted to get some opinions on judge scores. This happenend 2 weeks in a row now. Last week we got a 5 in taste and a 9 in taste in the same entry. This weekend in louisville we got a 4 in tenderness by one judge and a 9 by another judge. I'm not complaining about the scores in general, but that the scores are so far apart. This should never happen, having a 6 point jump in one catagory. Louisville hap over 50% master judges, so i was really surprised at this. Anybody have any good ideas on this or had this happen to you. :shock::confused::doh:

TexEx
05-08-2011, 06:04 PM
Wanted to get some opinions on judge scores. This happenend 2 weeks in a row now. Last week we got a 5 in taste and a 9 in taste in the same entry. This weekend in louisville we got a 4 in tenderness by one judge and a 9 by another judge. I'm not complaining about the scores in general, but that the scores are so far apart. This should never happen, having a 6 point jump in one catagory. Louisville hap over 50% master judges, so i was really surprised at this. Anybody have any good ideas on this or had this happen to you. :shock::confused::doh:

Did they both sample the same piece? Of course not. A single chicken can only donate two thighs which would usually be identical. Same with Ribs. Ribs in a contest box are not all from the same rack. Pork same way as well as brisket.

I think the judges scored what they were given, but it does make you stop and think.

Texex

KC_Bobby
05-08-2011, 06:50 PM
Wanted to get some opinions on judge scores. This happenend 2 weeks in a row now. Last week we got a 5 in taste and a 9 in taste in the same entry. This weekend in louisville we got a 4 in tenderness by one judge and a 9 by another judge. I'm not complaining about the scores in general, but that the scores are so far apart. This should never happen, having a 6 point jump in one catagory. Louisville hap over 50% master judges, so i was really surprised at this. Anybody have any good ideas on this or had this happen to you. :shock::confused::doh:

My first thought is category. Was it chicken? Those scores can be all over, due to separate pieces, different animals, etc. Easier to dry one out and not cook another piece perfectly - compared to other categories.

Two weeks in a row? Might be that your recipe is either too spicy or not spicy enough. Those loves of spicy food score it high and the others do not.

Smoke Shack
05-08-2011, 06:50 PM
Or it could have been the "Gordon Ramsey syndrome".

Either way, as long as you only get one it won't hurt, but I certainly hope that the organizers/reps took steps to either determine why the judge gave such a low score. And, if they determine that is was GRS, then take steps to make sure that judge wouldn't be around at future contests!

quarters69
05-08-2011, 07:09 PM
It was pulled pork the 1st week, and ribs this weekend. We do not use a over spicy rub on our pork.

HarleyEarl
05-08-2011, 07:24 PM
Did all your ribs come from the same slab? If you used two slabs, one could have been cooked perfect & the other either over/under done. Also, with ribs, CBJ's for the most part judge tenderness on the KCBS criteria whereas if you have non-CBJ's, you'll get marked down if cooked to KCBS standards since they seem to like the meat falling off the bone. Now with the pork - you're looking at taste and that is very subjective. The judge that gave you the low score just didn't like your flavor profile. Unfortunately that's just the breaks. Good luck at your next contest.

NRA4Life
05-08-2011, 07:29 PM
I judged a contest recently, and one of the pork entries that I sampled had bone fragments in it. I was the only one at the table that got bone fragments in the pork (or the only one who bit into that portion of meat) and I'm sure that my tenderness score did not in any way match what the others scored it.

bbq.tom
05-08-2011, 10:08 PM
I had bone fragments in one of the ribs that I judged last weekend and scored way down on tenderness. I doubt that any other judge had bone fragments on their rib, therefore my score was thrown out. (I'm still trying to figure out how the team cut the ribs apart resulting in a LARGE piece of bone being left on the side of the rib! - seemed like it was cut by a band-saw instead of a knife!) I ALWAYS use a comment card if I score below a 7 on ANY entry. If a judge doesn't use a comment card then how can the team know what was wrong.

Bourbon Barrel BBQ
05-08-2011, 11:18 PM
I had bone fragments in one of the ribs that I judged last weekend and scored way down on tenderness. I doubt that any other judge had bone fragments on their rib, therefore my score was thrown out. (I'm still trying to figure out how the team cut the ribs apart resulting in a LARGE piece of bone being left on the side of the rib! - seemed like it was cut by a band-saw instead of a knife!) I ALWAYS use a comment card if I score below a 7 on ANY entry. If a judge doesn't use a comment card then how can the team know what was wrong.

We end up cutting our ribs that way on accident every now and then. If a bone curves hard to one side and you don't notice you can saw right through it with a electric knife. I've turned them in that way before and crossed my fingers that the judge would bite in the middle and not on the end.

Hub
05-09-2011, 07:00 AM
Lots of good responses on the likely causes. My two cents: A properly completed comment card should be required on scores of 5 or below. The cooks need to know what the judge observed and why he or she scored it low. If the comment is bogus, then the Rep can have a chat with the judge. A comment like "bone fragments in my sample" is constructive commentary and alerts the cooks to be more careful in the future. It's all about communicating useful information.

bignburlyman
05-09-2011, 08:24 AM
Lots of good responses on the likely causes. My two cents: A properly completed comment card should be required on scores of 5 or below. The cooks need to know what the judge observed and why he or she scored it low. If the comment is bogus, then the Rep can have a chat with the judge. A comment like "bone fragments in my sample" is constructive commentary and alerts the cooks to be more careful in the future. It's all about communicating useful information.

I am sure the judges comment card (KCBS) is anonymous so it would be difficult to discuss with the judge, not impossible since there are only 6 judges to choose from at that table. I helped with a contest scoring one time and even with the few comment cards turned in some were illegible.

quarters69
05-09-2011, 08:28 AM
I am not mad about the 4 on tenderness. We knew that our ribs were overcooked. We did not expect a good score, I guess I am just confused why a judge would give us a 9 and another a 4. Seems to me it is to broad of a range for tenderness.

HarleyEarl
05-09-2011, 08:52 AM
I am not mad about the 4 on tenderness. We knew that our ribs were overcooked. We did not expect a good score, I guess I am just confused why a judge would give us a 9 and another a 4. Seems to me it is to broad of a range for tenderness.

Your comment helps a lot. If you felt they were over cooked, the lower scores more than likely came from the CBJ's whereas the 9 could have come from a non-CBJ that is accustom to Famous Dave's or Applebee's ribs.

Bunny
05-09-2011, 09:21 AM
Lots of good responses on the likely causes. My two cents: A properly completed comment card should be required on scores of 5 or below. The cooks need to know what the judge observed and why he or she scored it low. If the comment is bogus, then the Rep can have a chat with the judge. A comment like "bone fragments in my sample" is constructive commentary and alerts the cooks to be more careful in the future. It's all about communicating useful information.

When entering scores and if we run into 4's or below, I remind the judges at that point to please fill out comment cards because it helps the cooker. But we first look over all the cards and see if the 4 is in line. If not, we talk to the judge and if they insist it was, we ask them to then fill out the card. But you'll always get those judges who don't want to bother.

Bunny

quarters69
05-09-2011, 10:01 AM
Bunny, you should know more than anybody. Is is common for scores to be that wide of a margin. I thought kcbs was hoping to keep all scores inline with each other. I think we had 100% CBJ, with over 50% master judges.

EatonHoggBBQ
05-09-2011, 10:37 AM
I think we had 100% CBJ, with over 50% master judges.


There were a few first timers there too. Can't always blame them though. We had one at our table and scores were pretty much inline with each other.

carlyle
05-09-2011, 11:49 AM
Constructive comment cards and friendly rep intervention at the time of judging can both help clear up this puzzle.

Don't think the tracking system for KCBS is off the ground yet. I hope it gets up and running and that it works the way it is intended.

Unless this situation is caught by table captain, reps as it happens, then we are stuck trying to read minds and guess about reasons.

Better luck in the future.

NRA4Life
05-09-2011, 08:39 PM
Lots of good responses on the likely causes. My two cents: A properly completed comment card should be required on scores of 5 or below. The cooks need to know what the judge observed and why he or she scored it low. If the comment is bogus, then the Rep can have a chat with the judge. A comment like "bone fragments in my sample" is constructive commentary and alerts the cooks to be more careful in the future. It's all about communicating useful information.

As a cook, I'd appreciate a comment card for anything lower than a 7...as a judge, I always give a card for anything lower than a 6 and sometimes I'll provide one for a 6. And I do fill out the card telling them how it could have been made better, without destructive comments added.

billygbob
05-09-2011, 09:18 PM
We end up cutting our ribs that way on accident every now and then. If a bone curves hard to one side and you don't notice you can saw right through it with a electric knife. I've turned them in that way before and crossed my fingers that the judge would bite in the middle and not on the end.

Nice. Now I have to worry about breaking a tooth or peritonitis (the ingestion of sharp bone structures such as fish and chicken bones could cause peritonitis by penetration of the intestinal tract - see PubMed.gov). So you just cover up the various detritus and debris when you drop your pulled pork too?

Yum! Looking forward to next contest now. :hungry:

Contracted Cookers
05-09-2011, 09:48 PM
What were the rest of your scores

quarters69
05-09-2011, 09:54 PM
777
889
788
777
777
644
These were the rib scores at louisville

Contracted Cookers
05-09-2011, 10:13 PM
Looks like you had a low baller and a high baller on the same table. High ballers can be hard on contest also especially if scores are tight

Mister Bob
05-09-2011, 10:52 PM
At every competition there are great cooks, good cooks, mediocre cooks and even some bad cooks. Those who think the same doesn't apply to the judges, are just kidding themselves.

If you're lucky enough to have your product land on a table with all good or great judges (meaning competent, committed, fair and knowledgeable) at least your appearance and tenderness scores should be very consistent, good or bad. With good judging there should never be a 6 point swing in those two categories. Yet it happens all the time!

I'm really tired of people defending that kind of poor judging, saying that no two chicken thighs are the same, so maybe one was perfectly done and the other wasn't. That's just a crock! Chicken bought at the same time from the same source, refrigerated together, cooked with the same method, at the same temperature, and usually in the same pan will be enough alike that a 6 point swing in tenderness should be impossible, yet it happens all too often!

I believe judges training should include more objective criteria for determining appearance and tenderness scores. Value should be placed on color, arrangement, consistency, neatness, etc., some definable qualities other than "it looks like something I just have to eat!"

The same goes for tenderness. There should be a clearly defined standard for proper tenderness for each of the categories, and all judges should be measuring that. That's the only way to tighten up the scores. A judges preference for mushy ribs for instance, should not result in low scores for 'perfectly' cooked ribs.

A lot of time, effort and money is being spent by the cooks, and I believe they deserve nothing less than qualified, fair and consistent judging.

Contracted Cookers
05-09-2011, 11:15 PM
So what color of sauce should win.

Mister Bob
05-09-2011, 11:21 PM
So what color of sauce should win.

Not black

Lake Dogs
05-10-2011, 07:34 AM
At every competition there are great cooks, good cooks, mediocre cooks and even some bad cooks. Those who think the same doesn't apply to the judges, are just kidding themselves.

If you're lucky enough to have your product land on a table with all good or great judges (meaning competent, committed, fair and knowledgeable) at least your appearance and tenderness scores should be very consistent, good or bad. With good judging there should never be a 6 point swing in those two categories. Yet it happens all the time!

I'm really tired of people defending that kind of poor judging, saying that no two chicken thighs are the same, so maybe one was perfectly done and the other wasn't. That's just a crock! Chicken bought at the same time from the same source, refrigerated together, cooked with the same method, at the same temperature, and usually in the same pan will be enough alike that a 6 point swing in tenderness should be impossible, yet it happens all too often!

I believe judges training should include more objective criteria for determining appearance and tenderness scores. Value should be placed on color, arrangement, consistency, neatness, etc., some definable qualities other than "it looks like something I just have to eat!"

The same goes for tenderness. There should be a clearly defined standard for proper tenderness for each of the categories, and all judges should be measuring that. That's the only way to tighten up the scores. A judges preference for mushy ribs for instance, should not result in low scores for 'perfectly' cooked ribs.

A lot of time, effort and money is being spent by the cooks, and I believe they deserve nothing less than qualified, fair and consistent judging.

I 100% agree. To the defenders, they have a point, to a point (if you will). Ribs, if from a different rib, can taste different. For that matter, depending on how it's cooked, they can have a huge variance in tenderness on the same rib (like if cooked improperly on a rib rack). Variance happens. HOWEVER, probably not as much as the scores reflect, particularly in pork and brisket. Even chicken, not so much.

I think KCBS, IMHO, has been a bit of a victim of it's own success. It's grown very fast and frankly it's tough to train judges fast enough. This doesn't bode well for a good deep consistent judging pool. I was glad to see the beer drankin' judges get excused (another thread). I'd love to see KCBS train and certify like others, notably MBN. However, even good lengthy training and a lengthy certification process still doesnt totally prevent rogue judges from doing silly things. Luckily most sanctioning bodies throw out the low score. However, rogue judging isn't limited to down scores; it happens in scores upwards too. It's tough. It's complicated.

Bourbon Barrel BBQ
05-10-2011, 09:18 AM
Nice. Now I have to worry about breaking a tooth or peritonitis (the ingestion of sharp bone structures such as fish and chicken bones could cause peritonitis by penetration of the intestinal tract - see PubMed.gov). So you just cover up the various detritus and debris when you drop your pulled pork too?

Yum! Looking forward to next contest now. :hungry:

I usually pick out the larger chunks of gravel when it hits the ground and the mud blends right in to the same color as the sauce. The extra bits of grass and weeds is what you have to watch out for. Judges know thats not parsley.

quarters69
05-10-2011, 09:28 AM
I usually pick out the larger chunks of gravel when it hits the ground and the mud blends right in to the same color as the sauce. The extra bits of grass and weeds is what you have to watch out for. Judges know thats not parsley.

I've seen Erik do that when he drops the box on the way to turn in. No worrys though. That just adds a little texture to your meat.