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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 07-27-2010, 10:55 AM   #1
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Join Date: 04-21-10
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Default Competition Pulled Pork

As I have said in a couple earlier posts, I'm entering first competition in a couple weeks. I had another question reg. pork entry. Has anybody had any success by saucing their pork with a mustard based carolina style sauce in a KCBS event? I assume the idea would be to keep it close to the sauce that is used in your region, but was just curious about your thoughts on this matter.
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Old 07-27-2010, 11:36 AM   #2
Southern Home Boy
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Location: St. Louis, MO

We used a Carolina Mustard sauce in our first comp. The pork was tender, moist, had a great bark and was very flavorful. Scored 7s and 8s on taste.

Didn't get any comment cards, but I did talk to a few judges after the comp and asked them about it.

Pretty much every answer I got was some form of "don't do that." There's apparantly a particular flavor profile most judges expect and if they don't get it, they judge down. KCBS seems to look mainly for a sweet (overly sweet to me) tomato-based sauce.

Of course every judge is different and I'm sure some of our CBJs will chime in, but that was my experience.
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Old 07-27-2010, 12:21 PM   #3
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The problem with a mustard sauce, IMHO, is very few people really care for it, even
when it's a great sauce. First, on sauces in general, remember the contest is a meat
contest. Use as little sauce as you can. Dont mask the flavor. Hopefully the sauce
will compliment the flavor. If not, go without sauce. Then, using a little sauce, try
as best you can not to offend anyone. Not too hot (spicy), not too sweet, and not
too salty. Something that compliments the meat and doesn't turn folks off.

Unfortunately I've never seen a meat with a mustard sauce do very well.
Hance - Lake Dogs Cooking Team - MiM/MBN/GBA CBJ and comp cook
Lake Sinclair, GA (strategically about an hour from darn near anywhere)
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 07-27-2010, 12:32 PM   #4
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Old 07-27-2010, 04:40 PM   #5
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The only time I have cooked in NC was in Kings Mountain. Didn't use any sauce on my pork and took a 1st. It is a meat contest and, being from Lexington, NC, I'll only use sauce for personal cuisine and will NEVER ever try that stinking SC style mustard sauce.

Didn't use sauce in KCBS contests until this year when my wife exercised her authority and said use the damn sauce and I seem to be doing better in the pork catagory.
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Old 07-27-2010, 09:28 PM   #6
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I would enjoy a good mustard based sauce, but that's just me. The main thing is that it is a meat contest and the sauce should only compliment the meat, not cover it up.
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Old 07-28-2010, 06:07 AM   #7
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Join Date: 04-21-09
Location: Marietta, Ohio

I was given a good piece of advice from the Brethren before my first contest.
Don't piss of 2 of the judges.
Even though I make a kick-butt mustard sauce and 75% of the folks who try it love it.. the rest don't like the mustard/vinegar taste...
You get that same ratio in a group of judges, and yer done.

I didn't listen and tried it on my pork in my first contest... the appearance and taste scores varied from a 9 to a 5... got killed...

Mustard does tend to look a little brown and dull after it sits for awhile.

I was told that since the majority of the judges are usually local, if you do a contest... say on the Georgia/South Carolina border where mustard sauce is popular, you might do well.... but then a gain, that one Ohio idiot judge who's taking a little BBQ vacation will probably hate it.

Bottom line is... if it's a KCBS, better to use a Kansas City type sauce I believe.
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