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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.

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Old 04-15-2013, 06:45 AM   #1
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Join Date: 02-11-12
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Default Comp pork tenderness scores

Does bark hurt the tenderness score? How many of you include bark?
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:16 AM   #2
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Judges DO like bark. If it's good bark, not burnt or jerky like,put it in the box.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:27 AM   #3
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Some of the newer judges, believe it or not, arent that familiar with BBQ. Some of them think the bark represents burnt pork...even the good bark.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:31 AM   #4
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Every competition is different. First, I suggest seeking out those with 100% CBJ's. Also, to some degree, sanctioning bodies, as their certification processes can be different. Where I'm heading is that the contests with 100% CBJ's will have more seasoned CBJ's and they'll appreciate a better bark, as long as it's not tough, chewey, or actually burnt.
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Started competing in chili cookoffs back in the 1990's and have competed in more than I care to count. I became a CBJ in MiM in 2005, then MBN and in GBA in 2010. I've probably judged 130+- BBQ comps (sanctioned and unsanctioned) over this time. That said, I really enjoy competing more than I enjoy judging, and hope to get back to doing 4 or 5 a year in the near future.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:47 AM   #5
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As a judge (and cook) I realize that the bark us "usually" a bit dryer and tougher than the inner portions of the pork, so I concentrate more of my Tenderness score on the inner and then the Taste score on overall how the bark and inner comes together. One suggestion: DON'T OVERSAUCE the pork!!! Judges are looking for pork flavor along with the bark and sauce and smoke. I've had some pork that was so drenched in sauce that you could not taste any pork flavor at all. I know that this question is on tenderness, but I felt compelled to throw in the Taste as well.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:00 AM   #6
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Thanks guys. I normally include bark and I love it but I thought maybe the whole cooking at home vs comp pork might be causing lower tenderness scores. I've read on here that if your brisket has bark on it then it will get scored down on tenderness so I thought maybe it would apply to pork also.
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