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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 07-26-2009, 11:20 AM   #1
Uncle Buds BBQ
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Default "Here comes the Judge"....trip report with pron

Well it's official. I took the class, raised my hand, repeated the oath, and now I'm a judge! But wait, I'm a cook...judges are on the other side! Why have I done this? Let me tell ya!

We have been competing for 3 years now and our product has REALLY improved but we don't score high at all. We practice, we read, we try new techniques but to no avail. Others, who are well respected in the BBQ community had suggested that a KCBS judges class would be beneficial and they were right.

I learned some key things at class that were not apparent looking at it through "cooks eyes". Plus, it gave me a better appreciation for some slight scoring differences. Now, I'll need to sign up to judge some comps which will probably be strange at first. I feel more comfortable in front of a cooker rather than inside the judges tent.

Now...about the class.

We have wanted to take the class for a while but just couldn't fit it in when the class was being held close to Atlanta. A few months back I saw one offered in Madison, MS so I called Bud Jr. and asked if he was UP for a road trip!

The Knights of Columbus at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church hold a comp in Oct. called Grillin for Life. http://www.grillinforlife.com/ and decided to host a judges class this Sat. (oh..and for some reason they think the "KC" in KCBS stands for Knights of Columbus)

Bud Jr. and I jumped in the Family Truckster and headed out Friday morning for the 6 hour drive to Madison with a much needed rest stop at the Bass Pro Shop in Birmingham. Got to check out some of their cookers and a few fishing poles.

Now it's on to Jackson, MS. We asked the class organizer for a few recommendations to their local BBQ joints and settled on The Haute Pig for dinner. It's a higher class place then what we are used to but the Q was good.

In the morning we headed over to the church and spotted their cooker in the parking lot.



We took a peek in the kitchen and got to see MOUNDS of meat being preped.



After checking in we and about 60 other folks got a seat in the gym as class started. That's Ron Harwell teaching the class.
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Old 07-26-2009, 11:31 AM   #2
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There were 6 students to a table just like judges at a comp. Here are the table captains (Knights) getting ready.



Then the first meat was presented. To save time, we were judging only 3 entries.


Here is our table. That's Jim at the end. He had flown in from Austin, TX just for the class. We had students from 7 different states!.


The rib entries.


And the pork...judging it for appearance.


And finally the brisky!!!



Before we knew it it was over. Had a great time and learned a few things. I would recommend that any cook who wants to improve their scores take the class.

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Old 07-26-2009, 03:50 PM   #3
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Good report, Bud. Hopefully it will inspire more cooks to take a judging class. Having an understanding of what happens inside the judging tent not only helps cooks score better but I believe it also goes a long way toward eliminating the "us vs them" hostility that some cookers develop.

Without cooks AND judges, there is no contest!

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Old 07-27-2009, 10:12 AM   #4
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Just how does one go about scheduling a Judges school for their event ??

Obviously call KCBS but then what ??
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Old 07-27-2009, 10:26 AM   #5
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Good question Skinny. I don't know the answer but from what I saw if you have a big class you need a lot of help.

This class had 10 judges tables. We only did 3 entries per meat but that equals 120 boxes!!! I don't like prepping just 4 boxes for a comp...I can't imagine them doing 120!

I should have done this in my original post but "Thank you" to the cooks, table captains, and others that put on the class. I know it was a lot of work!
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Old 07-27-2009, 10:31 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Buds BBQ View Post
And finally the brisky!!!
That is the most peculiar brisket entry I have ever seen!!! How did they explain where they got white-meat brisket?!

Congratulations on becoming a CBJ! Any time we greet a judge, we thank them for coming out -- because we can't do what we do unless they do what they do.
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Old 07-27-2009, 10:35 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by DivaHerself View Post
That is the most peculiar brisket entry I have ever seen!!! How did they explain where they got white-meat brisket?!
Diva,
Oh...you caught me! I was so busy EATING the brisky I forgot to take the pic. Bud Jr. and I were planning to hit another BBQ joint on the way out of town. What were we thinking!!!!

I was FULL after class.
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:28 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Buds BBQ View Post
Diva,
Oh...you caught me! I was so busy EATING the brisky I forgot to take the pic. Bud Jr. and I were planning to hit another BBQ joint on the way out of town. What were we thinking!!!!

I was FULL after class.
OK, if that's not Brisket then what is it ? Chicken ?
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:39 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Skinny Cook View Post
OK, if that's not Brisket then what is it ? Chicken ?
I think it was a pork entry. They really did try to make each entry different and there were a few "curve balls" thrown in that I won't give away. Don't want to spoil it for those future judges.
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:56 AM   #10
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Quote:
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OK, if that's not Brisket then what is it ? Chicken ?
I think its Chicken salad!
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Old 07-27-2009, 12:12 PM   #11
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I think its Chicken salad!
I was guessing the third white meat,,,,Chunked Bologna.
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Old 07-27-2009, 12:24 PM   #12
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OK, so who at KCBS has to be contacted and about how much does it cost to put on a Judging Class ?

Are there several folks that cover certain areas or territories ?

Does there have to be a min number of participants ?

I gots lots more questions if we can get someone to address us on here ??
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Old 07-27-2009, 10:45 PM   #13
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Uncle Bud sorry for the thread highjacking. I will start a new thread on my quest to land a judging class.
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Old 07-28-2009, 11:17 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Skinny Cook View Post
Uncle Bud sorry for the thread highjacking. I will start a new thread on my quest to land a judging class.
No problem. Maybe you can email Ron Harwell since he taught our class.
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:56 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Uncle Buds BBQ View Post
No problem. Maybe you can email Ron Harwell since he taught our class.
It's in the works. Thanks for your help.

It seems that there is just one person that handles setting up the judging classes. That is suprising to me given the size and number of events that need certified judges. I would have thought that each region or area of the country would have their own coodinator.

I'll keep on my quest.
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