View Full Version : 2014 Season I can't wait!

Rusty Kettle
10-28-2013, 05:12 AM
I finally talked my wife into agreeing to become a BBQ team of 2 for 2014. We are now the Rusty Kettle BBQ competition team. We start training tomorrow and well as soon as I can get the paperwork in order we will be signing up for our first competition. I am hoping to visit a competition with her before we actually enter a contest. I think we both need to see it first hand. I am just excited to finally talk someone into being my teammate. Like I told her without at least one teammate I could not compete successfully. I know some people do but I really need the extra set of hands to help. She says that she is worried I will give up if we lose but I told her my only goal for this coming season was to finish the middle of the pack and not DAL. She agreed as long as I agreed to work with BBQ even if we did finish DAL. We will be competing purely with Weber One Touch Kettle grills set up as smokers. Hence the name the Rusty Kettle BBQ competition team. Only one was purchased new all the rest are rusted and old. I even have an avacado green kettle 1968-1970. They still cook great but they have been through the mill. I just have a love for the simplicity of Kettle grills. I am hoping to do 3-4 contests this year. One a month June, July, August, and September in 2014. Odds are we will get our you know whats handed to us this season but to finally get rolling is exciting. Cooking space is limited our budget is low at best and we will be flying by the seat of our pants. A total plan for disaster and we know it. We plan to give it our best and go into it trying to win. Not sure where our first stop in June will be yet but I am hoping to hit the Warren County All American BBQ Festival in July. Its in my current home state of Pennsylvania. I joined KCBS a few months ago so I am at least a supporting member. I know it is a long shot winning anything when we are clearly out gunned with cookers but hey maybe it will prove it is not what you cook with but how well you know your equipment. If not oh well we are going to have a lot of fun doing it first and foremost and hopefully learn as much as we can about BBQ so even if we lose we will still have fun. I am over the moon and I can not sleep even though it will be months before we really get to compete. :loco: That little smile that is me right now. lol.

10-28-2013, 05:41 AM
practice and practice your timing, you will be fine, since you like Kettles, try to pick up a WSM, I see them on Craigslist...

10-28-2013, 09:02 AM
Ditto on finding a WSM. They are relatively in-expensive and proven winners in competition.

Try not to start your journey with negative vibes - DAL, total disaster, etc...

Go to a comp, spend some time with a team, we would welcome you, then practice. There is a learning curve but it should be enjoyable!

Have fun and listen to the Brethren - they are battle tested.

10-28-2013, 09:34 AM
Give the backyard division a try to get you feet wet. They are usually only two meats and entry costs are much lower. One call up and you'll be hooked


10-28-2013, 09:45 AM
Very cool! My wife and I have been a team for the past 6 years and we're still going! There are comps where we feel like selling everything and taking up competitive macrame instead, but the friends that we have made keep us coming back.

10-28-2013, 09:51 AM
Good luck to you and your wife in 2014. You are going to meet tons of great people who will be willing to help with lots of advise.

Kave Dweller
10-28-2013, 11:27 AM
Its the most miserable fun you will ever have.

10-28-2013, 02:01 PM
Good for you! I did my first competition this year and have absolutely caught the bug for it. Earlier this year I attended the class to become a KCBS Certified BBQ Judge and then judged a few competitions before entering my first competition as a team. I would HIGHLY recommend doing that. You learn a lot about the process, what judges are looking for and what competition food looks/tastes like. It was a big step up for me. I also took two of my friends with me so they could help me as I prepped for competitions.

Good luck.

10-28-2013, 02:30 PM
I admire you

use those rusty kettles!!

dont get a WSM and be a sheep!!!


10-28-2013, 06:05 PM
good luck to you and remember to have fun

10-29-2013, 05:35 AM
Sounds awesome- my wife and I just started competing this year and after getting a Reserve GC we are absolutely hooked. Visit a competition or two and talk to and watch people; most have seemed happy to help us. I found that after visiting our first comp I had much more of an idea what things would be like and I picked up a few tips (putting PVC pipe on the legs of my folding tables, hanging my paper towels with bungees, using skewers to move my sauced chicken) that have been small invaluable.

Two more tips as a fellow newbie: use this site and the google search below as much as you can. Ask questions when you can't find answers and keep us in the loop on how it goes. Second, if you can swing a class or the cheaper option of a video/online class like the Pit Bulls Up In Smoke (do NOT buy it at full price as it goes on sale quite frequently for like $275 off) or Kosmos Q DVD set try and do it. Again as someone absolutely new to comp BBQ, I picked up numerous tips from both; I follow neither exactly but have modified the techniques/flavor profiles to become my own. Basically what I'm saying is to utilize as many of the resources out there on comp BBQ as you can because it definitely speeds up the learning curve. Good luck!

10-29-2013, 08:26 AM
Have fun!!

10-29-2013, 08:47 AM
Have fun!!

Exactly! Thats the most important part!

... well that, and a few beers!

Good Luck!... and dont be scared to ask questions, thats how you cut the learning curve in half.

Serious Hog
10-29-2013, 09:02 AM
Wife and I started competing last year and we wish we had gotten into it a long time ago. For the first time, we have a joint hobby that we can really pour our energies into together. We talk about it nonstop. Our last comp of the season was this past Saturday and we already can't wait for next season! Win, lose, or draw, I hope that's what it's like for you two also. Good luck!

Backfirin' BBQ
10-29-2013, 10:49 PM
Its great fun. We have only done 2 so far but Win or lose its a blast. Everyone we have met has been very helpfull. Good luck in 2014!

Craigie Mack
10-29-2013, 11:10 PM
Tell me about it, 2014 can't come soon enough!

I am a member of The Flavor of Rub BBQ Crew out of S. Jersey. It's a bunch of high school friends (we graduated mid-90's) and somehow all live within 1 mile of each other (4 of us on the same street!).

However, I have twin 7 yr old boys and they love everything BBQ. The wife usually brings them around on Sunday's at 1:35pm, so they are out of everyones way by then. Anyway, they aren't having any of this "not helping" anymore.

So a month or so ago, the wife and I did a charity Rib/Chicken thing outside of Philly and we did rather well....Overall 7th, 6th in Ribs, 15th in Chicken. The boys did their fair share of the work (didn't scrape the skins, I wanted to see how we'd do). We called ourselves Craigie Mack's BBQ Shack, got a picture of 3 pigs holding ribs and made a banner. We can't even grill hotdogs outside without the boys hanging the banner up out back!

So then last weekend, we did a competition at the Philly Homebrew Warehouse. It was under the Flavor of Rub team, but it was just me, another teammate, an ex-member of the team from last year, and a member of another team that wanted to help out and hang out. I brought one of the twins with me (it was a tough thing, the other one was in tears...he didn't buy any of my stories on why he had to stay home). Truth be told, they both are really great helpers for their age, but the one I brought can hold his own.

Anyway, it was a Rib Comp, with a Mac-N-Cheese category as well. Since it's all the 7 yr old eats, we entered it. Of course we used a family recipe (no Kraft box here), and basically Nate did most of the work. I measured the milk, flour, butter and put it in there for him, but he cooked the bacon, made the cheese sauce all on his own. Don't you know, we win 1st place?

Anyway, both the boys cannot wait to do it again come the spring time....I told them, we got all winter to PRACTICE!

I took pics of Nate cooking, you can find them on the craigiemacksbbqshack page on facebook. It was an awesome day! (Ribs took 3rd too, behind Finns Finest who deservedly took first).