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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 08-31-2013, 01:08 PM   #1
akoda
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Default Baby backs vs spares

Does everyone use spares for competitions or does anyone use BB's? Does anyone when with BB's?

Thanks
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Old 08-31-2013, 01:23 PM   #2
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Common discussion here.
Here is one of many threads:

http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/sh...ghlight=spares

I think you will find that most experienced folks will say to cook whatever you do best.

We kicked ass with BB's. Others did the same and others dominated with Spares.

Quality of the product is far more important than cut of meat, IMHO

Good Luck

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Old 08-31-2013, 02:09 PM   #3
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Last weekend we took 9th with spares our neighbors took 10th with baby's.
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Old 08-31-2013, 02:26 PM   #4
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I've done both. Done well with both, did bad with both. My opinion is that judges have an expectation of what they are going to get, if they get something different it better be much better than their expectation or it will score particularly bad. I think the average judge expects to get spares, so if they get BB's they better be amazing. Therefore I've been using spares this year.
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Old 08-31-2013, 03:40 PM   #5
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We always use spares cut down to St Lou's
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Old 08-31-2013, 05:26 PM   #6
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If you turn in a perfectly seasoned, perfectly cooked rib you will do well regardless of the type of rib. Over the past 5 years or so we have the same number of first place finishes with spares as with baby backs. I cook the best ribs that I can get at the time.
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Old 08-31-2013, 05:47 PM   #7
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Thanks for the replies.

We have done BB's for the last 10 years or so because that's what we like to eat. Some of my research has seemed to lean some to spares. I was pondering a change, but I think I will stay with BB's and do a couple of spares at the comp and turn in what is best. The straight bones look like something easier to do a good presentation with, they are now selling spares already trimmed to st louis style, so maybe we try those.

Thanks again

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Old 08-31-2013, 08:23 PM   #8
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I used to cook baby backs but switched to st Louis cut spares a few years ago. It's a bit less expensive, it's a little meatier and can be cooked just as well.
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Old 08-31-2013, 11:53 PM   #9
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Ive done bb only for the last 4 years and done ok with them
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:07 AM   #10
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My family prefers BBs so when I competed that is what I did and did well
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Old 09-01-2013, 09:36 AM   #11
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I saw in the other thread that someone recommended cutting the strap from th BB's, do you all do that? I know it could hurt in presentation because it can tear but it is a delicious piece of meat IMO
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Old 09-01-2013, 10:06 AM   #12
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I've done BB's and haven't cut the strap.

Slightly aside, but watch your sanctioning body. The different bodies define tenderness differently. Doesn't seem like a big deal, until you get really into it. For example, KCBS's "bite through" rib is probably better suited to a St Louis Spare cadillac cut if you can. MBN's "pull cleanly from the bone with only slight resistence" is probably better suited to a 2 bone presentation of Baby Backs. And there are others...
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Old 09-01-2013, 10:30 AM   #13
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Cook and turn in what you cook best.. If they are not spares, practice until they are your best.
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Old 09-01-2013, 11:55 AM   #14
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What should a smoker of BB's do differently to a rack of spares than they would to a rack of BB's?
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Old 09-01-2013, 12:35 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pappy Q View Post
I've done both. Done well with both, did bad with both. My opinion is that judges have an expectation of what they are going to get, if they get something different it better be much better than their expectation or it will score particularly bad. I think the average judge expects to get spares, so if they get BB's they better be amazing. Therefore I've been using spares this year.
I completely disagree with your contention that "judges have an expectation of what they are going to get" when it comes to ribs, except they expect "good" ribs (no matter what kind or cut)!

I've been judging for years and have NEVER heard another judge say anything about rib types or cuts or anything. How good it was, yes, but not about the cut unless it is completely different.

Believe it or not, MOST judges do not go into the judges tent "expecting" something in particular. We judge what is presented.
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