View Full Version : University of Que Class??

12-07-2017, 10:40 PM
I've watched with great envy some of the Que classes documented on this forum. I probably won't ever get to a Johnny Trigg or Mixon class. But this popped up last week and there is a local class, held at one of my favorite local smokehouses.

Anyone ever taken one of these classes? Does the cost seem right for it being a 1 day class by these guys?

I also know Ron L took a class with Hunsaker in Columbia, MO. Might be able to swing one of those too, but this would be super convenient.

What say the Brethren?


12-07-2017, 11:07 PM
I took Tuffy Stones class earlier this year and it was $750 for an afternoon, and then most of the next day. So $400 for a one day might be a bit high but it's not too far out of the norm. Harry Soo's class is about 7 hours and he's charging $325.

It does sound like it's a full on lecture-oriented style class where you just sit there and watch them do everything. I'm a hands-on person and when I went to Tuffy's school I found it kind of frustrating to not be doing anything... sitting in ****ty chairs for multiple hours watching somebody else trim / inject meat was pretty boring and I didn't learn as much as I was hoping I would have.

Just giving my input but if you're looking at getting into competition BBQ this class would likely get you pointed in the right direction in terms of rubs, injections, meat trimming, etc. Good luck and if you go please report back with a good critique.

12-08-2017, 03:56 AM
These guys have many years of experience between them and will have a lot of ideas and suggestions to bring to the table for your cooks. Being on the Food Network and Destination America channels they have to be good at what they do to be featured guests.

But keep in mind that just because someone does something a certain way, doesn't mean it's the only way to do it. That's the beauty of learning as an individual, you find your own way using the information gleaned from others.

I would agree with SmoothBoarBBQ, a hands on class would be more desirable as the majority of people learn by doing. It doesn't mean that the sitting class isn't good; but by taking diligent notes and applying them in your cooks, there will be much to be learned in your process of using your notes in cooks.

If you take the class, keep us posted and give us a review of your experience.

12-08-2017, 06:15 AM
Took a <$300 one day lecture style class in Oct.. Sure I would have loved to do some of the stuff, but it gave me time to take lots of pics and detailed notes. Got two calls (our first ever) two week after.

12-08-2017, 06:23 AM
Are you wanting to (or do you already) get into KCBS competition? If so, these sort of classes can be pretty helpful to a newbie above and beyond how they cook a particular piece of meat, as there's a lot more to being successful at it than making good tasting food....things like time management, tips/tools used, etc.

If you aren't already, I would recommend getting certified as a KCBS judge as well. You find out a lot about what judges are looking for and get to try some competition style que for each category as examples. I really enjoyed the class I took. Then sit as a judge a couple times.

I took the KCBS judge class first and then took a class a few months later from Rod Gray of Pellet Envy. His class was a two day deal that basically followed the exact prep and then cook timeline he follows for a competition. I learned a lot from the class that had nothing to do with how to cook a piece of meat that I feel saved me some trial and error before my first competition.

I suppose it depends what you're looking to get out of the class - IMO unless you are planning to compete, taking a KCBS geared cook class is a bit overkill for just learning some new things to make tasty food in your backyard. A lot of the stuff that goes into a KCBS cook is over the top and borderline ridiculous - the way the meat is trimmed, injected with this and that, layers of rub and then sauces and then finishing rubs. I don't cook for guests at my house like I would for a KCBS comp.

12-08-2017, 09:20 AM
Honestly I don't know. I've got some friends that have been pushing me to do a comp. I think it would be fun but realize it's totally different than cooking for friends. I've seen posts here about the extreme timelines, rubs, saucing, etc.

I've looked at some judging classes. We have StL BBQ Society too and they offer classes as well.

Just not sure I really want to commit the time to do a bunch of comps, but still think it would be helpful to learn some new methods.

12-08-2017, 09:45 AM
If you're wanting to dip your toe into the competition world and see if it's for you, doing a judging class, judging a comp or two, and/or sitting in with a team would be a pretty good way to get a feel for what it involves. If it's something you like and want to do, a competition class would be perfect to tie all that knowledge together.

As someone who became a judge, then judged, then took a competition class, and then competed [once so far] I don't think any of that is required if you just want to up your backyard game and try out some new techniques or recipe styles - honestly this place is a great resource for all that. In the class I took, as it pertained to cook styles and recipes itself - that was just one successful team's method among many.

If you know what the judges are looking for regarding appearance, taste, and texture it's fairly easy to come up with a recipe to get there on your own. But as I mentioned, for the competition class, there was a ton of valuable stuff I learned that had nothing to do with a recipe or running a smoker that made it totally worth it.

I'm not trying to talk you out of it by any means, if you want to compete take a competition class, those guys clearly know what they're doing. If you want to up your backyard game (which is still what I enjoy most) take a class oriented around that or use the money to buy more meat and experiment with some recipes you find here. IMO if you're not going to compete, paying money to spend an hour learning about building a turn in box doesn't really help you much.

You're welcome to make the trek across the state next year and watch me pilot a controlled trainwreck of a comp cook if you want to :crazy: and see what a worst case scenario would look like :thumb:

12-08-2017, 11:36 AM
You're welcome to make the trek across the state next year and watch me pilot a controlled trainwreck of a comp cook if you want to

I may take you up on that. I've got a friend here that's done a few local comps and got a 6th place overall 2nd in Ribs at his last one. I've told him I'd like to lend a hand too, but I'd make a weekend of it sometime and come hang with you guys too.

Thanks for the advice!

12-08-2017, 12:03 PM
Did you take a look at the thread John Lewis started in the competition section? Drink a lot of water for that inevitable pissing contest :thumb: