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View Full Version : Did we really do this bad? "Smoked" at Pork In The Park


slowerlowerbbq
04-26-2010, 10:22 PM
We did our first comp of the year last week in Salisbury, MD against some of the best teams on the east coast and we got totally killed in all categories. This was our first comp where I really felt we had a good grasp of what to do. There were no major issues and everything went as planned. Almost too well. Either way, we didnt do quite as well as we had hoped or expected. I was hoping we could get some feedback on our turn-in boxes and give any critique for presentation. Some of them are fairly obvious now looking back at the pics, but I was surprised at some of the low presentation scores for chicken. I thought that box looked pretty dang good.

http://www.slowerlowerbbq.com/images/stories/2010-04-16/PITP2010_007.jpg

Scores: Chicken 8 8 6 7 7 6 93rd of 132 TOTAL:144.5714
http://www.slowerlowerbbq.com/images/stories/2010-04-16/PITP2010_008.jpg

Scores: Ribs 7 9 7 7 7 7 104th of 132 TOTAL: 137.7142

http://www.slowerlowerbbq.com/images/stories/2010-04-16/PITP2010_011.jpg

Scores: Pork 7 7 7 7 7 7 92nd of 131 TOTAL: 141.7142
http://www.slowerlowerbbq.com/images/stories/2010-04-16/PITP2010_012.jpg

Scores: Brisket 8 7 8 9 8 6 125th of 131 TOTAL: 121.7144

Thanks for looking. If you'd like to read more, I wrote plenty more about our experience in our blog (http://www.slowerlowerbbq.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=37&Itemid=55)(shameless plug mod)

Ford
04-27-2010, 05:52 AM
I think your problem wasn't with presentation. Those scores look about right. I assume you cleaned up the sauce smears on the chicken box before turning in or they were generous. There's nothing that really stands out and maybe that's the pictures.

To get a 120 and 130 means low taste scores for sure. I'd be asking yourself what went wrong with taste and tenderness.

pigmaker23
04-27-2010, 07:30 AM
I would have to agree with Ford, the boxes are not bad, the flavor profile that used ( sauces,rubs,wood) must have been substantially different from the rest of the pack and that difference the judges did not like this time around. the key thing to keep a log of waht you seasoned with and after a few contests you will know what is working , good luck and have fun

Jacked UP BBQ
04-27-2010, 08:32 AM
I think the chicken looks great, everything else looks pretty good. I would have to agree with the men above that something went wrong with the flavor profile. I wouldn't change much as far appearance goes. Ribs look a little long and skinny.

CivilWarBBQ
04-27-2010, 09:08 AM
Huh. Odd that the appearance scores for your brisket box were the highest of the four; I thought it was the weakest of this group. No way that chicken box should have gotten a six!

Keep plugging - you'll probably find that the scores judges hand out overall tend to rise as the season progresses.

ique
04-27-2010, 09:22 AM
At Salisbury I had a brisket box that I thought was solid 9's in appearance and got a bunch of 7's so ya never know... especially with a big contest like this and probably a whole bunch of first time judges.

Agree with others though, your appearance looks pretty good and is not what killed you. Keep at it...

chopshop
04-27-2010, 10:23 AM
im still looking for the smears on the chicken box. is this one of those pictures you have to stare at for a minute until you could actually see the smears. ITS MAGIC!!!

Diver
04-27-2010, 10:52 AM
I agree with the previous posters on your appearance scores as well. Hang in there.

Judging results can be strange. My pork at Salisbury was admittedly my weakest box but 1 judge's overall score was 9 points less than the next lowest(6 4 4). I am a CBJ so we are obviously a strange group but dang. At least give me a note.

Of course, as my wife pointed out, it could be that he/she was the only certified, experienced judge at the table. Aren't wives great?

Dan - 3eyzbbq
04-27-2010, 01:31 PM
One of the top 5 teams overall got a 3 for tenderness. Bad scores happen, just keep at it. Boxes look great.

Jacked UP BBQ
04-27-2010, 02:03 PM
The scoring in Salisbury was def odd, we got hammered on out brisket box and don't thinkwe could have assembled a better looking one.

slowerlowerbbq
04-27-2010, 05:44 PM
Thanks so much everyone for your comments and votes of confidence. At least I can get pointers here on appearance. Taste and tenderness I'm a bit on my own. I thought we were pretty good on appearance at least, so now I know we really need to focus more on the other areas. It's really great to have these pics though, cuz I can really see a lot of little stuff wrong here:
-skinny, inconsistently cut, and 2 hacked up ribs (Shoulda seen the ones that DIDNT go in the box....ugh)
-The burnt ends look goofy and out of place at the front of the box...need to go in the back next time
-I dont know what happened with that pork box, but it looks awful to me now

But I was really proud of that chicken box considering I got 8 thighs in there, the color was real good, sizes were pretty consistent. I'm not seeing that smear though, Ford.

Next stop, Middletown, DE. I hope to meet some of y'all there.

Weiss Mountain Smoke
04-27-2010, 09:03 PM
nice boxes, especially for your first event. :clap2:

most important thing to note is that appearance counts towards your score the least as it is weighted score. this may not be exact, but i think the breakdown is something like this:

1/7 appearance
2/7 tenderness
4/7 taste

Sledneck
04-27-2010, 09:09 PM
bigger contest=bigger crapshoot

Midnight Smoke
04-28-2010, 01:42 AM
I don't know chit about comp's. but that chicken looks perfect to me. The other entries look good as well.

bbqpitstop
04-28-2010, 03:57 AM
only thing I can think of on the "smear" subject is Ford is seeing that small shadow on the front left indentation in the styrofoam and thinks it's a smear....Ford ??? It's just the way the camera angle caught it and if you can't tell the shape of the styrofoam it does kind of appear as a slight smear of sauce.....

Diver
04-28-2010, 07:45 AM
nice boxes, especially for your first event. :clap2:

most important thing to note is that appearance counts towards your score the least as it is weighted score. this may not be exact, but i think the breakdown is something like this:

1/7 appearance
2/7 tenderness
4/7 taste

That is the correct breakdown.
The multipliers are:
Appearance .5714
Taste 2.2858
Tenderness 1.1428

I have only done 3 KCBS contests but I threw together a quick spreadsheet where I can throw in the judges scores and do comparisons from comp to comp. It's nothing fancy by any means but I added it as an attachment if anyone is interested.

Southern Home Boy
04-28-2010, 01:38 PM
Wacky appearance scores seem to go both ways. This brisket turn-in got straight 9s....:confused: Go figure.
http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac160/southernhomeboy/2010CookoffKickoffBrisket.jpg

paydabill
04-28-2010, 01:44 PM
I am going to have to disagree with the judges.

I would give your chicken a solid 8 - it looks great.
Ribs a 7 - the tearing of the meat and cuts
Pork 8
Brisket - it looks the slopiest and does not make me want to grab it.

For a first contest I would say that you have a great start.

Smolderin Swine
04-28-2010, 03:45 PM
I competed at the park I was 85 overall, my chicken didn't look as good as yours and I was 26th in fact all of my entries came in with scores they should not of gotten accept for the brisket. I came in 111 it should have been 132 it was so over cooked and bland. I had it covered to long and bearly got 6 slices to stay in one piece let alone look good. unfortunately this time was a major crap shoot, i think maybe there was alot of new judges. better luck next time

Weiss Mountain Smoke
04-28-2010, 08:40 PM
That is the correct breakdown.
The multipliers are:
Appearance .5714
Taste 2.2858
Tenderness 1.1428

I have only done 3 KCBS contests but I threw together a quick spreadsheet where I can throw in the judges scores and do comparisons from comp to comp. It's nothing fancy by any means but I added it as an attachment if anyone is interested.

this spreadsheet is great, thanks for sharing Diver. i am such a nerd for this kind of thing! :laugh:

metrics metrics metrics...

SmokinOkie
04-29-2010, 08:24 AM
Really great job for a first contest.

What you didn't post was your T/T scores and that's where you tanked. Those appearance scores are ok, but they're not pulling you down.

Look at those and see how many points you lost there. Too many times, new teams focus on appearance, but it's Taste/Tenderness that wins you money. Appearance does matter, but focus on those two now, the appearance will come.

slowerlowerbbq
04-29-2010, 12:58 PM
Really great job for a first contest.

What you didn't post was your T/T scores and that's where you tanked. Those appearance scores are ok, but they're not pulling you down.

Look at those and see how many points you lost there. Too many times, new teams focus on appearance, but it's Taste/Tenderness that wins you money. Appearance does matter, but focus on those two now, the appearance will come.

Thanks for the feedback, I'm with ya SmokinOkie! I'm still waiting for the admins to apply the taste plugin to the website :crazy::becky: . We were so crushed after this defeat, I wanted to at least get some confirmation on the look of our boxes and everyone's been great with their feedback and I feel a lot better. Unfortunately, that's the easiest stuff to get help with here.

I just sent my partner a huge email today about everything I think that went wrong in T/T (plus appearance...with everyone's help here) and that's what we'll be working on between now and next months comp.