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PekingPorker
06-25-2013, 09:00 AM
So I finally decided to take the plunge and try my hand at the competitive world of bbq. I entered the Backyard division of the Atlanta BBQ Festival (KCBS event in September). The event organizers called me and apologized that the Backyard had filled up, but offered to let me compete in the pro division. I decided to give it a shot.

My main concern is brisket for two reasons, cost and inconsistency. I am pretty confident in all the other categories, and if I were in the backyard division, this could be a stress free environment. Going against the big boys in the pro division has me stressed. My brisket has always been hit or miss, and the one I cooked last weekend was a total miss. So my question is this, should I not worry about brisket and really focus on what I am good at? I don't have the smoker space to cook multiple briskets at comp. I'm cooking on a Lang 36 and a XL BGE.

I really just wanted to experience the competition environment and hopefully make some new friends that have the same passion for bbq as me.

Smoke&HoneyBBQ
06-25-2013, 09:05 AM
I would do it. Anything can happen any weekend. Plus great chance that field of big boys has a good 1/2 who this might be their first to second comp.

Plus at the end of the day from what I have seen people are competitive but they are competitive with themselves.

Outnumbered
06-25-2013, 09:15 AM
Just do it. Don't fret too much about it and just go have fun.

You can hold a brisket in a cooler/Cambro for several hours, as well as pork butts. I believe if you time things correctly, you can have more than enough room on those cookers.

Do a practice run through before you go...build boxes, follow the timelines, etc. Take pictures of the boxes at your practice. You will notice things in the pictures that you just don't see when staring at it.

Capn Kev
06-25-2013, 09:20 AM
Cook all 4 meats. Shoot me a PM and I can give you some pointers on brisket. Set your goals like this... 1) Have fun, 2) learn as much as possible, 3) Have more fun!...

cpw
06-25-2013, 10:11 AM
Don't stress it, use it as a learning environment. In our first KCBS contest, we placed a 3rd in Brisket, having only cooked it in one other sanctioned event (FBA). And believe me, we can't cook brisket. If you're OK with the other 3 categories, give it a shot and don't worry about the "big boys."

PekingPorker
06-25-2013, 10:15 AM
Thanks for the replies. I definitely plan on cooking Brisket, I just don't think I will worry about it and baby it as much as I will my other meats. More than anything I just want to experience the environment and meet some good folks!

CBQ
06-25-2013, 10:23 AM
Have fun! If you aren't confident in the brisket and have limited space, just cook 1. Cooking lots of stuff in the hope that some of it might be good isn't a good strategy. It creates a lot more stuff for you to keep track of, and overloading the cookers makes it more likely none of it will be good.

Inject the brisket with FAB B Lite, Kosmos, or Butchers. Use half the amount that they tell you to on the package. When it hits 150, wrap it. Start checking at 180 degrees...when a probe slides in to the flat without resistance, it's done. That could be between 180 and 205 degrees, depending on your cooker and the level of fat in the brisket. Cube the point, slice the flat, and good luck.

Uncle Buds BBQ
06-25-2013, 10:26 AM
Where in ATL are you?

Do a practice brisket and I'll come over and give you a score! :clap2::clap2::clap2:

wrenfro12
06-25-2013, 10:46 AM
I am trying to start a new rule and you could be the first to follow it. When you enter a pro contest for the first time...you should supply the beer to the backyard teams :)

Have fun and stop by and say hi. I will be competing at that comp in the backyard contest. The backyard turn ins for that contest are so early it's kind of a weird cook. The pro side is normal times.

fnbish
06-25-2013, 10:55 AM
We had a good time at the Atlanta event last year. This year we are cooking Winder which is the same weekend. I'm in the boat of suggesting that you just cook 1 brisket and keep it simple. Cook till 150-160, then wrap and start checking for tenderness around 195ish. I try and get mine off the cooker and resting about 3hrs before brisket turn in, which is nice because you aren't having to check it for doneness while the madness of turn-ins is happening.

I actually work directly across the highway from where the competition is in Atlantic Station. If you have any competition questions feel free to shoot me a message!

Candy Sue
06-25-2013, 11:01 AM
Buy the best grade of brisket you can find and just get one. I know you can find prime and waygu in Atlanta. Good Luck!

TailGateJoecom
06-25-2013, 11:59 AM
So I finally decided to take the plunge and try my hand at the competitive world of bbq. I entered the Backyard division of the Atlanta BBQ Festival (KCBS event in September). The event organizers called me and apologized that the Backyard had filled up, but offered to let me compete in the pro division. I decided to give it a shot.

My main concern is brisket for two reasons, cost and inconsistency. I am pretty confident in all the other categories, and if I were in the backyard division, this could be a stress free environment. Going against the big boys in the pro division has me stressed. My brisket has always been hit or miss, and the one I cooked last weekend was a total miss. So my question is this, should I not worry about brisket and really focus on what I am good at? I don't have the smoker space to cook multiple briskets at comp. I'm cooking on a Lang 36 and a XL BGE.

I really just wanted to experience the competition environment and hopefully make some new friends that have the same passion for bbq as me.

Hey there, congrats on taking the plunge! I just did my first ever comp at the Safeway BBQ Battle in DC against some heavyweights in BBQ, it was a blast. Don't worry about it and just enjoy yourself having a great time!

BTW, at the comp I cooked my second ever brisket, lol! It was not great, but 10 people apparently did worse. One word of advice, do a test cook of all meats with your comp timeline, as I am sure others in this thread will also suggest.

fnbish
06-25-2013, 12:10 PM
Buy the best grade of brisket you can find and just get one. I know you can find prime and waygu in Atlanta. Good Luck!

Waygu definitely, but if you know of a place in Atlanta that has Prime for a decent price please let me know :becky:. I've been to a lot of butcher shops and they say they can't order it even though they carry other prime beef. I'm happy with the CAB i've been using though, but always wanted to try prime.

PekingPorker
06-25-2013, 12:54 PM
Where in ATL are you?

Do a practice brisket and I'll come over and give you a score! :clap2::clap2::clap2:

I'm in Dunwoody. I may have to take you up on that!

PekingPorker
06-25-2013, 12:55 PM
I am trying to start a new rule and you could be the first to follow it. When you enter a pro contest for the first time...you should supply the beer to the backyard teams :)

Have fun and stop by and say hi. I will be competing at that comp in the backyard contest. The backyard turn ins for that contest are so early it's kind of a weird cook. The pro side is normal times.

Ha! Remember I'm actually on a Backyard team's budget! I definitely will come introduce myself and have a beer with ya once turn ins are finished!

ckelly
06-25-2013, 06:10 PM
Shoot me a PM and I'll give you my number.
I think we have a friend in common because this story sounds WAY to familiar!

J&B'sBBQ
06-25-2013, 06:22 PM
Good luck in Atlanta! We decided to not do that contest because if you're a BY team and have won anything in a contest before you cannot compete BY there...first we've heard of that. We decided to do Pigs and Peaches the weekend before and we'll head up to Winder to pester some teams up there and enjoy the festival :).

I agree with everyone else and don't stress! We're just BY and did the contest in Lincolnton that required a brisket. First time we ever cooked one in competition and only cooked 1 (cost reasons). We used CAB, since we can't find prime for a reasonable price as Jason stated, and we took first in brisket (BY mind you) :).

Just do what you do and trust in your food.

PekingPorker
06-25-2013, 07:34 PM
Good luck in Atlanta! We decided to not do that contest because if you're a BY team and have won anything in a contest before you cannot compete BY there...first we've heard of that. We decided to do Pigs and Peaches the weekend before and we'll head up to Winder to pester some teams up there and enjoy the festival :).

I agree with everyone else and don't stress! We're just BY and did the contest in Lincolnton that required a brisket. First time we ever cooked one in competition and only cooked 1 (cost reasons). We used CAB, since we can't find prime for a reasonable price as Jason stated, and we took first in brisket (BY mind you) :).

Just do what you do and trust in your food.

I'll definitely come introduce myself at Pigs and Peaches. We plan to be there as spectators.

J&B'sBBQ
06-25-2013, 09:19 PM
I'll definitely come introduce myself at Pigs and Peaches. We plan to be there as spectators.

Absolutely come find us and say hello! We love meeting new people.

BillyVoltaire
06-25-2013, 09:29 PM
Fnbish,

The Meat Mart in Conyers can get you prime briskets, I plan on getting a couple soon (I do not know the price).

BV

Waygu definitely, but if you know of a place in Atlanta that has Prime for a decent price please let me know :becky:. I've been to a lot of butcher shops and they say they can't order it even though they carry other prime beef. I'm happy with the CAB i've been using though, but always wanted to try prime.

fnbish
06-25-2013, 10:17 PM
Fnbish,

The Meat Mart in Conyers can get you prime briskets, I plan on getting a couple soon (I do not know the price).

BV

Thanks. Conyers is too far unfortunately. I've been happy with the CAB I've been getting from my butcher. One day I'll find a prime that isn't online :grin:.

DepChief22
06-25-2013, 10:23 PM
We just did our first comp this past weekend. There was no backyard category. We finished 20 out of 25. We had a great time and learned a lot. Just don't sweat it and have fun and do what you do best.
The only advise is don't get in a hurry and put your meats on to early. That's what we did and it hurt us. Every thing had to sit and my brisket dried out. We still got 15 for that.
So good luck and have fun.

fat heads bbq
06-26-2013, 10:33 AM
best advice. just chill have fun and do it like you do at home. dont over think it.

J&B'sBBQ
06-26-2013, 01:28 PM
Waygu definitely, but if you know of a place in Atlanta that has Prime for a decent price please let me know :becky:. I've been to a lot of butcher shops and they say they can't order it even though they carry other prime beef. I'm happy with the CAB i've been using though, but always wanted to try prime.

Jason - not sure what you would consider a "decent price" but have you tried Wilkes Meat Market in Suwanee on Peachtree Industrial? Since we don't have to cook brisket often, I haven't looked at their selection recently, but they have always had prime when we've been in there.

BillyVoltaire
06-26-2013, 04:30 PM
Jason - not sure what you would consider a "decent price" but have you tried Wilkes Meat Market in Suwanee on Peachtree Industrial? Since we don't have to cook brisket often, I haven't looked at their selection recently, but they have always had prime when we've been in there.

I think I read somewhere that Wilkes will wet age them for you also. It was some place in Gwinnett County.

BV

PekingPorker
06-26-2013, 07:54 PM
Patton's Meat Market http://pattonsmeatmarket.com/ in Norcross is where I get my briskets. They always have CAB and Waygu, and can if they are out of stock they can get them in less than 24 hours. I believe he can get Prime as well.

BillyVoltaire
06-26-2013, 08:00 PM
Patton's Meat Market http://pattonsmeatmarket.com/ in Norcross is where I get my briskets. They always have CAB and Waygu, and can if they are out of stock they can get them in less than 24 hours. I believe he can get Prime as well.

PekingPorker,

How are the prices on the Waygu there? I cannot find anything on the west side, looks like road trips are in my future.

BV

fnbish
06-26-2013, 08:03 PM
Patton's Meat Market http://pattonsmeatmarket.com/ in Norcross is where I get my briskets. They always have CAB and Waygu, and can if they are out of stock they can get them in less than 24 hours. I believe he can get Prime as well.

That's where I have been getting my brisket for a while now. I've asked Parker about Prime, but the price isn't much cheaper than wagyu. Those guys are great though and I'm pretty happy with the CAB.

PekingPorker
06-26-2013, 08:03 PM
PekingPorker,

How are the prices on the Waygu there? I cannot find anything on the west side, looks like road trips are in my future.

BV

Waygu runs $9.99/lb. They have a cooler on the left side of the store when you walk in where they keep all the briskets. It's nice since you can personally feel all of them and choose which one you want. Since you're making the drive from the west side, I would call first just to make sure they are not sold out.

Mad About Que
06-27-2013, 11:58 AM
...did the contest in Lincolnton that required a brisket.

Lincolnton NC Hog Happening? if so, what a mess. basically a bike rally with some bbq on the side. if I were a backyard cooker and wanted to jump up, that's a good contest. not too many big names, actually not too many small teams either. we were walking around and thought it seemed scarce for a comp.