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82's BBQ
06-27-2012, 07:47 PM
I have a little bit of a scenario to present. In regards to competition BBQ some well known teams have said how they only cook high end meats, and that, that is how they do so well. Here are my questions/scenarios

1. Does a grade/breed of meat really make that much difference?

2. If so, then wouldn't it seem accurate that those doing well with choice meats are just as good of a cook, if not better than those that are using better cuts (Prime/waygu etc?

3. If so, isn't the idea of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat?

**Disclaimer, I have not won a category yet. I have, however, been within very close range (all that is needed is 1 judge to agree with the rest and score 1 point higher) using store bought choice meats.

bigabyte
06-27-2012, 07:56 PM
1. Does a grade/breed of meat really make that much difference?
It can. If you have a selection of the same cut, varying in quality from worst to best, and cook them all perfectly, then the best quality piece should stand out from the others.

2. If so, then wouldn't it seem accurate that those using choice meats are just as good of a cook, if not better than some of the well known teams?
The cooks using choice who consistently outscore those using higher quality cuts are clearly better cooks. But shouldn't they score even higher if they switched to higher quality meats?

3. If so, isn't the purpose of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat?
I don't ever recall that statement being made as the goal of a comp. The goal is to get the highest score.

bmanMA
06-27-2012, 08:01 PM
I think it's sorta like (legal) athletic supplements. It's about when you are operating at 100% of your potential, not when you are are 60%. Supplements are useless in many cases for the 60% guy, whereas they give the guy operating at 100% a nice boost. The 60% may see a bit of a bump, but not nearly what he would if he were operating at a higher level to begin with.

Same for Q. At some point you reach the limit at which Choice can take you. Then you bump it up. A beginner would likely be wasting money on Prime. Sure, may get a bit of a bump... but he's not likely fully realizing the full potential of what the meat can deliver. I know from experience :doh:

boogiesnap
06-27-2012, 08:07 PM
i haven't heard that statement from a top team.

picking quality meat is for certain part of being a good/great cook. it doesn't need to be high end.

82's BBQ
06-27-2012, 08:25 PM
It can. If you have a selection of the same cut, varying in quality from worst to best, and cook them all perfectly, then the best quality piece should stand out from the others.

Absolutely

The cooks using choice who consistently outscore those using higher quality cuts are clearly better cooks. But shouldn't they score even higher if they switched to higher quality meats?

180.0000 is 180.0000

I don't ever recall that statement being made as the goal of a comp. The goal is to get the highest score.

By having the highest score would therefore determine who the best cook at that event was.

bigabyte
06-27-2012, 09:15 PM
Absolutely



180.0000 is 180.0000



By having the highest score would therefore determine who the best cook at that event was.
You're talking about one time events. I'm talking about consistency. Nobody is getting 180's every comp. Nobody.

I also disagree that the winner of a comp is the best "cook". If logic like that was true, then in any sport, bbq comps included, you would only need to compete once, and for all time we would know how good everyone really is. That is not how the real world works. Mediocre teams can have a lucky weekend and win a comp that a known and respected cook does not win. That mediocre cook is still only mediocre though, and the better cooks are still better.

Podge
06-28-2012, 02:30 PM
You have some interesting questions, which are always on people's minds (or at least, should be)

I am a firm believer to buy the best meat you can for a contest. I will not go into detail on what I've learned in my own trials, as I feel what I think works best and what doesn't for me, is a secret in my opinion.

1. Does a grade/breed of meat really make that much difference?

Absolutely ! Buy yourself a pound of hamburger from a ol' jersey milk cow that was slaughtered, and compare it to a certified angus. There is a difference.

2. If so, then wouldn't it seem accurate that those doing well with choice meats are just as good of a cook, if not better than those that are using better cuts (Prime/waygu etc?

Again, absolutely. A choice brisket can beat out a wagyu any day. But, a great cook can beat a wagyu with a select brisket, if the other guy cooking is a mediocre cook with a waygu or doesn't know how to cook a brisket to begin with (i.e.: "this brisket tastes like roast beef at a gas station, from BBQ Pitmasters)

3. If so, isn't the idea of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat?

I believe the better cook, more often than not, will come out on top. The better cook who picks out the best meat available, may earn just enough extra points to edge out a GC. I feel that as long as all meats are available to select with, within the rules, a good cook does himself/herself a disservice by buying/cooking something they feel is inferior.

I've used here, examples of brisket, but the same is true for pork and chicken.

SirPorkaLot
06-28-2012, 02:43 PM
I have a little bit of a scenario to present. In regards to competition BBQ some well known teams have said how they only cook high end meats, and that, that is how they do so well. Here are my questions/scenarios

1. Does a grade/breed of meat really make that much difference?

2. If so, then wouldn't it seem accurate that those doing well with choice meats are just as good of a cook, if not better than those that are using better cuts (Prime/waygu etc?

3. If so, isn't the idea of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat?

**Disclaimer, I have not won a category yet. I have, however, been within very close range (all that is needed is 1 judge to agree with the rest and score 1 point higher) using store bought choice meats.


1. Does a grade/breed of meat really make that much difference? Yes

2. If so, then wouldn't it seem accurate that those doing well with choice meats are just as good of a cook, if not better than those that are using better cuts (Prime/waygu etc?) Yes

3. If so, isn't the idea of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat? No. The idea of competition BBQ is to win at whatever costs, staying within the rules set by the sanctioning body.

Or at least that is what idea a lot of teams are working off of.

For others (like myself), competition BBQ is a way to enjoy quality time with my son while doing something I enjoy, in a fun and competitive environment.

If your goal is to win as much as possible, then your methods should reflect that goal, and should include cooking the best meat you can afford with the best equipment you can afford.

If your goal is similar to mine, then go with that you know and enjoy.

Personally I have never cooked Waygu beef or heritage pork in competition, and I use a COS and a Weber kettle to compete to this day.

I don't win a lot, but I do get calls, and always end up better than at least half the entrants.

If I upped my game and invested lot of money in equipment and meat, I could very well end up in the top percentage, but that is not what drives me.

Lake Dogs
06-28-2012, 02:46 PM
3. If so, isn't the idea of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat?

I think you have very good answers to the first two question, but regarding this, the answer is NO. The idea of competition BBQ is NOT to see who is the better cook. The idea is to see, on this given day, what BBQ is the most tender, best tasting, best presented piece of meat on this day. Averages being averages the best cook will win. BUT, just because you're the best cook out there doesn't mean you're going to win. Just because you're the best cook out there with the best quality meat money can purchase you're going to win either. I've seen Gary Lanton with a select brisky beat the ever-lovin-daylights out of the guys at Jacks New South (Myrons kids) with their wyagu. I've beaten Myron himself and other big names in pork a few times.

Rigs, even in MBN, dont buy wins. Personalities dont buy wins. Best BBQ that day usually does.

Can a select beat a wyagu, yep. Does a wyagu cooked perfectly come out more tender than a perfectly cooked select, yes, usually.

So, those who can afford the best and cook well with it usually get the best. The remainder of us low-lifes get to enjoy beating 'em with the best quality meat we can afford. :-) May the best cook win, but it's not about who's the best cook, it's about who's BBQ is the best product, today.

Disconnect
06-29-2012, 03:24 AM
I have a little bit of a scenario to present. In regards to competition BBQ some well known teams have said how they only cook high end meats, and that, that is how they do so well. Here are my questions/scenarios

3. If so, isn't the idea of competition BBQ to see who is the better cook, not who is the better picker of meat?


Others addressed the first ones pretty well, but I wanted to point out that if you follow that to it's logical conclusion then we must all cook in a climate-controlled room using identical seasonings, identical meats on identical cookers. Otherwise its about who buys/makes the best cooker/seasoning/etc, or who got the best spot on the parking lot, whether it was windy there or not, how much sand was kicked up, etc..


Our very first comp was last year, and we ended up competing against some of the best teams in this end of the country. (Not what we'd originally intended!) We turned in a brisket just to get some points - up to then, even in practice, it was generally somewhere between terrible and inedible. Our grocery-store brisket came in 25 out of 40 and we beat several very good teams in brisket that day. Does that make us better brisket cooks than they are? No way! Nor better meat pickers, or anything else. It just means they had an exceptionally bad day and we had an exceptionally good one. (One of the teams we beat that day just took GC against some huge national teams. Our averages - if nothing went wrong - would have put us in the bottom quarter. They just had a bad day when we happened to have a good one.)