This year we will be skipping the competition side of things and joining Guy Fieri for the “Stagecoach Smokehouse Experience” where we will be cooking a 1000+ racks of competition worthy ribs for the festival attendies. Come by and try the Ribs that made us the 2017 California Rib Team of the Year!
We have spent the last couple years hitting the BBQ circuit hard! and unfortunately this website suffered for all those nights cooking brisket. We have a lot of new adventures in store for 2018 but before we start giving details here’s a breakdown of our 2017 BBQ season.
First thank you to everyone for your support. We were fortunate enough to take 2nd for Overall in California (it was a fun and tight race) and finished 1st in ribs and 1st in brisket in California. We also finished 38th in the Nation for Overall.
Here are some more of our stats for this year:
11- Top 10 finishes (with 7 of those being top 3 finishes)
3 Grand Championships ( all 700+ scores)
1 Reserve Grand
30-Top 10 Category Calls (4-180 scores, 6-1st places)
4th in Ribs at the Jack Daniels Invitational
11th in Chicken and the American Royal Invitational
2 people’s choice awards
We couldn’t do it with out the support of our Families, Friends and Sponsors.
Thank you to Green Mountain Grills – Corporate for being right by our side year in and year out. Big Poppa Smokers and Simply Marvelous BBQ#WCO for their support and being the flavors behind our BBQ. Smithfield#showusyoursmithfield for providing the best pork out there. Grizzly Coolers for helping keep the meat cold on all those long road trips.
2013 has come to a close and 2014 is upon us. The last weekend in December, we competed in The Wild West Cook Off in Lake Elsinore CA . This was a back to back competition and we were able to place 4th in pork, 4th in ribs and 10th in brisket the first day. Day 2 we placed 8th in chicken, 9th in ribs and 2nd in brisket. This was a great close to our BBQ year.
Here is a summary of our busy year in BBQ:
- 18 competitions
- 7000+ miles, competing in 4 states
- 59 top 10 calls
- 2 Reserve Grand Champions
- 1st in chicken
- 1st in Ribs
- 1st in brisket
- shot 3 tv spots
- World Food Championships
- Supermarket Superstars
- and a commercial for Bank of America
None of this could be done without our amazing sponsors. First and foremost Green Mountain Grills whose grills and support have made for such a successful year. Secondly Simply Marvelous Rubs, these are the rubs that are bringing home the money to teams across the country. Brandt Beef has provided us with the best briskest in the business that led us to 9 top 10 calls in brisket. Our newest sponsor Sweet Smoke Juice who turned our pork scores around half way through the year. Allredy Canopies that helped us look good and stay dry. Vacmaster and Canyon Coolers: traveling couldn’t be done without being able to vacuum seal our competition meat and transport days with no worries about ice melting. And iGrill who has been with us since the beginning making monitoring our temps as easy as possible.
And our new season has kicked off after competing in the Guinea Pig in Indio this past weekend, winning a 9th in ribs. Here’s to continuing the successes of 2013 into 2014!
We’ll its been a couple weeks, and I’m still in shock about the weekend we had in Vegas at the World Food Championships.
It started off when we got a call that we had an invite into the World Food Championships back in the middle of October. The Contest requires teams to be in Vegas ready to set up on a Wednesday so it took a little bit of work figuring out the logistics of how to get their. Unfortunately Joe, my Dad and myself (Andy) were the only ones that could get the time off work to make it there.
The competition was set up a little different with later turn in times and no chicken, which made the time there really relaxing. We had time to walk the grounds of Fremont Street and take in the sights and smells of over 450 different competitors cooking everything from deserts to chili and everything in between. BBQ was just one of the many categories and over 75 of the Top BBQ teams in the nation including teams from Europe, Africa and South America were there Thursday preying for their meats and lighting their fires for the cook that night.
When it was said and done we felt good about our turn ins, but of course those are the days the judges never seem to agree. Watching the awards was quite the experience, being as it was taped for a TV show the awards went really slow with multiple takes of the hosts announcing the winners. The hosts were only calling the top 5 in the BBQ categories. One by one we never heard our name for Ribs, Pork or Brisket. We had given up on making the Top 10 overall and competing the next day in the finals. Just as we were heading over to pick up our score sheets, we heard the host say “and representing California”, this perked our ears and then came “Rooftop Barbeque”. We couldn’t believe, being on stage along side some really prestigious teams was a real honor.
The excitement quickly turned to panic, for a few reasons. First I had signed up to teach a class the next morning and had planned on leaving that night. Not really thinking when I ran up on stage, that the producers were filming me and now needed me to stay for the finals. Quickly I made some calls and Steve Wilson agreed to cover for me (thanks to him and Abel for covering my butt). The second panic was we also didn’t have a place to stay (again we never thought we had a chance so only booked the hotel up until Friday). Luckly I have an Aunt who lives in Vegas and gave us a place to stay. And finally there was the cook. The rules had all the competitors confused on what was legal to turn in. We had some awesome prime tri tips with us from Brandt Beef, and there was no question that was what we wanted to turn in. The rules required us to turn in a single protein, we had to turn in on two silver plates with 5 samples on each and a beauty shot on each one.
That night trying to sleep was filled with thoughts and possibilities of what we could do to our plate to showcase the meat. The next morning we decided to go simple and let the meat shine. We went with 5 slices of tri tip on each plate fanned out with a whole tri tip on each plate as our “beauty shot”.
It was an interesting cook, we moved our camps down to a different part of Fremont St. we were fortunate enough to be set up next to Joe from Tippy Canoe BBQ. The day was filled with interviews and paying close attention to details of the tri tip, 10,000 dollars was on the line and we were doing everything we could to get a piece of it, after trying Tippy’s pork belly we knew it would be a challenge.
We were proud of our turn ins and waited for awards. In the end we finished 8th overall but we had a great time, met some more BBQ friends and had an awesome experience.
The show should air sometime around Feb or Mar on A&E.
Andy Allen, Rooftop Barbeque
We made it back from Salt Lake and have made a full recovery from the 13 hour drive home, just in time to head to Vegas for the next Sam’s Club Series.
Almost two weeks ago, we competed in the local event for the Sam’s Cub Series in Salt Lake City with hopes of making it into the top 6 spots and moving on to the regionals in Las Vegas and then hopefully the finals in Bentonville AR.
Salt Lake City was a beautiful place to BBQ, and the hospitality we received from our friends at IMBBQ.com made it that much better.
We made the trip in Joe’s new Toyota Hybrid, stuffing it with everything we needed and ourselves. Including our new Canopy made by Allredy Canopies.
We pulled into Mapleton, UT Thursday night getting a good night’s sleep at my aunt and uncle’s house.
The next morning headed to Snider Bros. meat and got a chance to hang out with Will and Crew from Got Smoke BBQ and checked out his shop. It was the nicest butcher shops I’ve been to and the meat was such high quality that we got a couple extra racks of ribs for the competition.
We then made our way over to our friends at R&R BBQ and ate lunch at their new restaurant. It was packed, and for good reason the food and atmosphere were both great.
After lunch we met up with a few other teams and drove the short distance over to Sam’s Club. It was great meeting up with our good friend Michael McDearman from The American Grillmaster Experience and Get Fired up Foods.
We then settled in for the night cooking on 1 Jim Bowie-Green Mountain Grill borrowed from Cameron- from Bam Bam’s BBQ who’s also opening up a restaurant in the Salt Lake area.
After the smoke cleared we came away Reserve Grand Champion with a 1st in chicken, 9th in ribs, 2nd in pork and 2nd in brisket. We were honored to cook against the great teams up in Salt Lake and can’t wait to cook along some of them in the Regional Sams Club event this weekend in Vegas.
Thanks to our awesome sponsors we couldn’t have done it without your support. Green Mountain Grills, Pitmaster BBQ Sauce, Allredy Canopies, Simply Marvelous Rubs, Brandt Beef, Ary Vacmaster and iGrill.
Had a great weekend at the Santa Anita BBQ 2nd Annual Winners’ Circle BBQ Championship.
We sold 1000 pieces of pig candy, 48 lbs of pork, 150 sausages and our left over competition meat.
To top off the weekend we placed 9th in chicken, 6th in pork and 8th overall out of 57 teams.
Here’s our chicken box. Joe Angelone is normally the chicken guru, but couldn’t make it this weekend. Our appearance suffered a little but the flavor and texture were right on. Placed 9th out of 57.
If your a BBQ teams that is cooking on a Green Mountain Grill, the next 14 teams to submit a 3-5 minute recipe video featuring their GMG will receive a coupon for 4 free bags of pellets. Videos are to be submitted to email@example.com & firstname.lastname@example.org. This is a great deal make sure to get yours in before its too late. Here’s are submission.
The summer is upon us and with temperatures in Southern California getting up to 100 degrees. Its time for Rooftop Barbeques break for the year. Well be starting back up in Westminster Ca August 18t-19th at the Ribs, Pigs & Watermelons-Summer Festival & Pro BBQ Competition.
During our hiatus I wanted to give you a look into who Rooftop Barbeque’s Sponsors are. This is the first of a series of Q&A sessions with the people behind some of the top BBQ products out there. First up is Jason from Green Mountain Grills.
- Rooftop: What is your role in Green Mountain Grills?
- Jason: My involvement will be in sales and marketing support and development. I want us to have more of a presence in the social media world and easier to find on the Internet as a whole and not to sell our product, but to inform folks more about pellet grilling and Green Mountain Grills. (GMG’s Twitter & Facebook)
- Rooftop: Can you give some of the history of GMG, when and how did it get its start?
- Jason: I watched my father for years cook on a pellet grill. Everyone was always amazed by the taste of the food. My father is an innovator and always made comments about how this grill he was grilling on could be so much better. He was in the import export business and had a strong comfort level with manufacturing for decades as well. These two loves merged in 2007 when he decided to build his first prototype. Today, you continue to see this innovative spirit in all of our products.
- Rooftop: Can you explain how a pellet grill works?
- Jason: First, a motor turns an auger which feeds pellets into a firebox.
Second, a hot rod automatically ignites the pellets, and a combustion fan keeps them burning.
Third, a Fan inside the hopper maintains positive pressure which prevents burn-back in the auger tube.
Finally, a sensor mounted inside the grill sends data to the on-board computer ten times every second, and the controller adjusts the air and pellet flow to maintain the temperature you set
- Rooftop: What are the differences between GMGs and the competitors?
- Jason: There are many on the technical side, including industry exclusive 150ºF-500ºF Temperature Range where you set your grill to any temperature in 5 degree increments with the touch of a button.
We have the Low Pellet Alarm so if you are running low on pellets in the hopper, an alarm will sound until you refill the hopper. A 13.5” Grill To Lid Clearance peaked lid allows you to cook a big Thanksgiving turkey or a stand-up chicken. Our Pellet Hopper Fan feature is on board to prevent burn back in your auger and assist in maintaining the temperature you choose. One of my favorite features for cold climates is the Ambient Air Sensor which assists you in all Temperatures and wind will never be an issue either.
Furthermore, We include the Digital Thermostatic Controller, the Fan Only Feature, Caster Wheels, 19 lb Hopper, Large Diameter Rear Wheels, Dome Thermometer on the Jim Bowie, Stainless Steel Built in Meat Probe, Stainless Steel Cooking Grates, and a Stainless Steel Lid Handle on all of our grills as standard equipment.
I would say that from a business model, we are entirely different. We want our local dealers to sell our products in their stores; period. We don’t want our products sold on the Internet and we don’t want to be in large box stores where help is difficult to find. We believe that this is a product that can’t just be handed to a consumer in a box. We want our local dealers to stand in front of our product and teach the customer about pellet grilling. That model has proven extremely successful for us and more importantly; our dealers.
- Rooftop: What do you see in GMG’s near future, what new things can we expect see?
- Jason: Green Mountain is continuing to innovate and I think the future of grilling is going to become more and more technologically advanced. Our focus on all of our products will be in this realm. We are constantly making sure we are listening to our customers and our dealers to continually improve our current products and indeed come out with new ones. We have a lot of revolutionary products in development and we are excited to bring them to market and start receiving feedback from our customers and our dealers.
- Rooftop: Where would you like to see GMG in the distant future?
- Jason: I believe the future of pellet grilling is very bright and I believe the future of Green Mountain Grills is tied to that belief. There are a whole heck of a lot folks out there who have no idea what a pellet grill even is and our goal is to continue to spread the word. If we all keep doing that, the future will be great for the pellet grilling market as a whole.
- Rooftop: What’s your favorite thing to cook on the GMG, any favorite recipes?
- Jason: I cook everything on my GMG from steaks and chicken to ribs, brisket, and tri tip. I have to say that I love my tri tip. I have a bourbon marinade that I have developed and perfected over the years and it is my go to when I am looking to raise some eye brows.
If you’re not busy this weekend, you should come out to Vegas! Rooftop BBQ competed last year in the first annual Vegas competition but this year is going to be quite different. The competition is just one part of the greater ACM weekend at the Mandalay Bay:
Besides the competition, there will be world champion vendors selling their famous barbecue and some of the brightest stars in country music will be performing on the Miller/Coors Stage all weekend. Also, there is the ACM Fan Jam (part of the 47th ACM Awards), ACM EXPO (outdoor living & country expo), rib eating championship, Jack Daniel’s Experience, and the Sin City Rib Throwdown.
You can get more information about the event here.
And not only are we competing, we are also sharing a vending spot with our 2011 sponsor, Fruita Wood. We’ll be sampling our award winning BBQ sauce and our brand new products: our Competition Blend Rub and Jalapeno Peach Jam. Make sure to stop by our booth to try out our products—special discounts if you purchase all three!
If you can’t come out to this competition, we hope to see you in two weeks at our home town competition in Wildomar on April 7!
Last weekend we competed at the Santa Anita Winners Circle BBQ, held in the race track’s infield. We had a great crowd all day and many were able to sample and purchase our new product, the Rooftop BBQ Jalapeno Peach Jam! Let us know how you like it! In the coming weeks you’ll be able to purchase the jam and our new rub in our store. Until then, those who bought it at the track are some of the lucky ones!
Not only did we sell over 1,300 people’s choice tickets, but we also received a first place in ribs! It was the team’s first ever 1st place and we could not be more excited about it!
If you will be in Las Vegas at the ACM BBQ Throwdown at the end of this month, Rooftop BBQ will be competing at the Mandalay Bay on March 31 and selling our BBQ sauce, rub, and jam all three days (March 30–April 1). Come by and visit!
We’re really going at this year. Last year we competed in 6 competitions, this year were looking at 12. We’ve signed up and are competing for the California BBQ Association Team of the Year and will be going full throttle starting next week.
With all these competitions we’d love to see some of you at them come on by and get some BBQ, we always have some extra after turn.
Santa Anita Park’s-Winners Circle BBQ Championship– Arcadia Ca, March 10th
ACM BBQ Throwdown-Las Vegas Nv, March 31st
The Ultimate BBQ Showdown East vs West-Wilomar Ca, April 7th
Sam’s Club Series-San Diego Ca, April 14
Stagecoach Music Festival– Indio Ca, April 28th
West Coast BBQ Classic-Long Beach Ca, May 12th
More to be announced
We would like to formally introduce our newest sponsor Green Mountain Grills. This past August we came in contact with Green Mountain Grills and discussed a parntership with them, ever since then, we’ve been loving the GMGs.
It all started when we recently bought an enclosed trailer to work out of at our competitions and we were looking into getting some smokers that would easily fit in the enclosed trailer. After reviewing many smokers and looking for the perfect fit for our team, we came across Green Mountain Grills through Whiskey Bent BBQ. These smokers had lots of advantages over the traditional pellet smoker. With features like a variable fan, low pellet alarm and an optional remote. We knew these smokers would help us get the sleep and rest we needed to be on our game the next morning, along with producing top notch Q. So in late August we recieved our shipment from Green Mountian Grills with one Jim Bowie and one Daniel Boone and their great premium gold blend pellets.
We had one week to do a test run before our next competition the Smokin’ in Mesquite Compeition in Nevada. I have to say it was a hot day in my backyard for that test run and I was not wanting to be out there practicing in the sun, but when that food came off the smoker it was some of the best BBQ we’ve made, very moist and the perfect amount of smoke. The next weekend we loaded up the trailer and headed to Mesquite. What a world of difference it makes at a competition when you get a good nights sleep. It was by far the most relaxing cook I’ve ever had. During awards we placed 12th in chicken and 5th in ribs against some great teams, and this was only our second time cooking on the Green Mountain Grills. And then a few weeks later we took two walks with a 10th in pork and a 10th in ribs at the Dana Point Competition.
We dont have any comps for the rest of this year but will be practicing on the GMGs and be ready to compete again in Havasu in January.
We recently sent a bottle of our Chipotle Molasses Competition Style Sauce to Scott Roberts from Scottrobertsweb.com, asking him to review it. I have been following Scott’s reviews for a while now and love how detailed they are, including such things as aroma and bottle design. A couple weeks ago the review was published—I couldn’t be happier! He pointed out everything I strove to create the sauce to be.
Here are some of the comments:
“A rich and sweet coalescence of tomatoes, brown sugar, molasses and onions are what I’m able to detect immediately. There is a lot of complexity at play, thanks to the mustard, honey, garlic and vanilla. I only felt a moderate teasing of smokiness yet the heat from the chipotles was quite noticeable.”
“I decided to try this out on a batch of grilled chicken, applying a generous coating of Rooftop BBQ Sauce to each side. Dear Lord, this was bone suckin’ good! Even my two boys, who at times (as kids can be) are pickier and hard-to-please as all get out, loved this stuff! When a product gets rave reviews from both children and those who prefer bolder, spicier, more complex tastes like myself, you know a sauce maker has hit paydirt!”
You can read the whole review HERE.
Since the review, the orders have been rolling in. We recently had a distributor contact us, turns out one of their clients in Germany wants to carry Rooftop BBQ Sauce.
Special thanks to Scott Roberts and everyone else who has helped us along the way of this new venture.
If you want to give us a review, leave a comment below.
I wanted to give everyone an update on our BBQ sauce. We now have it in Tom’s Farm in Corona Ca, and have had a great response so far. We are in talks to have it in 3 stores in orange county along with a few online retailers, If you have a store you would like it to be carried in please contact us and let us know. We recently had Greg Rempe from the bbq central radio show review our sauce you can find and download the episode here along with all of his other programs. Every tuesday at 6pm PST he hosts his show live at http://www.outdoorcookingchannel.com make sure to check it. If you haven’t had a chance to try our sauce yet please go to our store and get your bottle or come see us at our next competition. Keep checking back new products are always in the works.
Earlier this year we competed/vended at the Palm Springs West. This was a great weekend and a nice change from the our usual contest. We got into Palm Spring early Friday morning with 6 other teams, set up our camp and started cooking and sampling to the public. On the menu was tri-tip, sausage, ribs and ABTs (atomic buffalo turds AKA jalapenos stuffed with cream cheese wrapped in bacon).
On Saturday, the competition took place. It was set up to be more of a MIM (Memphis in May) competition, 3 judges came around and sampled our food as we talked to them about it. We served the judges our best tri-tip and ribs and talked to them about how we use our own rub and sauce on everything. It was a little nerve racking but not as much as waiting for your name to be called in a KCBS competition awards ceremony. We continued to serve—selling completely out of tri-tip on Saturday.
A few hours later the judges had come back to inform us we had won! We felt very honored to win, cooking against some really great teams. That night we had a great time hanging out with the other teams talking BBQ. This was a much more relaxed atmosphere then our normal competition and made for a fun night.
I want to take some time to thank all those that helped out over the weekend. Thanks to our friends and family for all your continued hard work. Thanks to our sponsors iGrill and Fruita Wood for giving us your support and awesome products to help us improve our BBQ. Thanks to Thom Emery for putting on this great event and thanks to the great teams we cooked next to: Pete’s Firehouse BBQ and T&J BBQ you guys were life savers.
If you missed us in Wildomar this past weekend, we will be vending our award winning BBQ in Palm Springs this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the Palm Springs WestFest!
The cost of the rodeo is $10, or $5 if you just want to enter the event but not watch the rodeo. Below are the times of the event:
10 am – 10 pm WestFest with a 6 pm Rodeo performance
10 am – 10 pm WestFest with a 5 pm Rodeo performance
10 am Fiesta Charra Escaramuza Competition with a 2 pm Rodeo performance
You can vote for Rooftop Barbeque with every $3 3-oz. sampler (the winning team wins a Frank Bogert Memorial Rodeo Belt Buckle).
We will start serving at 10 am on Friday and Saturday.
Just got back from a great competition, and Rooftop Rub was a hit. I hope all of you that got your hands on some—enjoy it! We’d love to hear your comments. And for those that couldn’t make it to the competition, the 32 oz. bags of Rooftop Rub are now on sale at our online store. And remember the first person to order Rooftop Rub will also receive a free “God bless BBQ” shirt.
I just got back from a weekend in Lake Havasu and sampled some great BBQ there. Congrats to Brazen BBQ and IAB 30 on GC and RGC at the Hava BBQ Competition.
I wanted to give everyone a quick update on what’s going on with Rooftop Barbeque. Last weekend we did a trial on our new pork rub, along with doing some practice on our ribs. We took 6 racks of ribs and used 3 different rubs; our normal commercial rub we’ve been using, a new commercial rub we’ve been wanting to try, and our new rub that we’ve been developing. We smoked the ribs over cherry chunks provided by our sponsor Fruita Wood Chunks. After a few hours of smoking we wrapped the ribs in foil and tried a couple of different ingredients in the foil with them. I can’t tell you what worked best but I’ll tell you what didn’t make the cut, it was the ambrosia sauce from Knox spices. Though it was good it wasn’t as good as what we found. If we ever change the recipe or it doesn’t do well in the next few competitions I’ll let the cat out of the bag. A couple of hours later the ribs came out and we did a blind taste test with our families. All the ribs were great but our new rub came out on top in the votes. So last tuesday we sent in the recipe to our co-packer and it’s being made as we speak.
In the next month be looking for rooftop rub for sale on our online store. We wanted to kick off our rub by doing a special promotion. Once we announce the launch of Rooftop Rub the first person to place their order will also receive there choice of the “God Bless BBQ” shirts. Keep checking back to be the first one to try the new rub.
The years over and the last few months have been crazy. I wanted to keep everyone up to date on our last competitions, what’s new in the world of Rooftop Barbeque, BBQ in general and a summary of our first year in BBQ. I also want to take this time to thank everyone who’s helped us through our rookie year.
Well I’ll start at the beginning, it’s been a little over a year since I was introduced to real BBQ. Kellen and I picked up an old small smoker from his neighbor that was giving it away led to learning the basics and cooking on a Sunday here and there. I was then given a small vertical smoker for Christmas and then it officially turned in to a hobby. We then did our first big smoke New Year’s Eve 2009 and realized how fun this “hobby” really was.
And then it truly began when we saw an ad for a local competition in Wildomar. Joe joined our team and after winning a third in tri tip and ninth in beef ribs and we were hooked.
The Project and Big Wins
Like most hobbies it became an obsession. Then came “the project.” We recruited our friend Keith to help us build a trailer smoker, not realizing what we were getting into. We figured a few weeks of work and it would be done… nine months later it was. “Old Pete” was built out of a 255 gallon propane tank and a lot of scrap metal.
We finished it up a few days before our next competition “Smokin’ in Mesquite.” After a fourth in pork and winning People’s Choice, we started looking for the next competition.
More Practicing and More Competitions
We spent a weekend in October barbequing pulled pork and ribs for our church. In November we entered the Golden Acorn BBQ competition in Campo. Taking second in People’s Choice and learning along the way. The first weekend in December we went out to Scottsdale, AZ to compete at Get Your Pig On and took home an eighth and ninth in ribs and brisket.
Finishing the Year
Now we’ve come full circle, a year ago we cooked our first big smoke on New Year’s Eve and this New Year’s we entered the Wild West BBQ competition in Wildomar. This was a back to back competition and quite a challenge, between being down a man each night and dealing with temps dropping down to 26°. But we pulled it off and took an 11th in ribs and 12th in chicken against 50 teams, several of them were in the top 25 in the nation. We also got to sample our ‘que to our friends and locals, selling around 500 samples. We were sold out within a few hours. It was a great time meeting all the people that attended.
Coming Up in 2011
So what’s next for us in 2011? We have teamed up with two companies that will be sponsoring us for 2011, look for blogs on them in the coming weeks. The Rooftop Barbeque clothing line will continue to grow… we currently have shirts for sale and will continue to expand on those. Plans continue for a Rooftop Barbeque Rub that we plan on selling in the next few months. Competitions are planned for the next few months, including Stagecoach Music Festival, and catering jobs continue to come in.
I’d like to take this time to thank everyone who’s helped us over the course of 2010. First I’d like to thank my wife Sam for all her hard work and support as we’ve moved into this new venture. I’d also like to thank the Rooftop team: Kellen, Joe and Keith, along with their families. We couldn’t have done it with out you; with all the work you put into competitions, catering, and practicing, along with building a beast of a smoker. I’d like to thank my family and in-laws for all the times you’ve helped me to get the things I needed to continue going down this road. Thanks to all the teams and fellow BBQ lovers who have given us advice throughout the year. And I’d like to thank God for putting this desire in my heart.
Posted by Andy Allen.
Labor Day weekend was only our second competition of our new BBQ journey. We entered the Smoking in Mesquite competition in Mesquite, NV knowing we had to step up our game against the many great teams there. We picked up our meat from T&H Prime Meats in San Marcos on Tuesday and loaded up our 100 pounds of meat. Normally we wouldn’t order that much, but we wanted to be prepared since there was 40,000 in cash and prizes. Loaded up on Wednesday and on our way, minus a quick stop at The Hat in Ontario for some great pastrami sandwiches. A few hours later we checked into our hotel, the Casablanca, and set up our site. Arlie Bragg sets up a great event, power and water for each site, very well organized. So now we had a whole day on Thursday to relax and hang by the pool, thats the way to do a BBQ competition. Thursday night they set up a large screen to watch BBQ Pitmasters on TLC. Pretty cool experience watching the show with two of that episode’s starring teams sitting behind us, Smokin’ Triggers and Big Poppa Smokers.
Now the day of the cook. After meat inspection we started our prep, injecting our pork and brisket and rubbing them down. Put our meat on with a mix of pecan and cherry wood around 7 pm, knowing we wanted to hold them for a couple hours after cooking. After walking around we got a little nervous seeing some of the well known teams not even starting their fires until after midnight, but to each his own. Time for bed… the best thing about Smokin’ in Mesquite is having a hotel room within 100 yards. ZZZZ.
6 am: Ribs are on and Chicken is getting prepped. A little info on our chicken, we smoke a deboned thigh with the skin scraped and rewrapped around it. We still are not sure what to do with it; we’ll see how it does in our next comp. 10:30: Pork and Brisket are resting and Ribs and Chicken have been cooking for a little bit. 11:30 to 1:30: I really don’t remember, running around sleep deprived will put you in zombie mode. Turn in done.
Now for the reason I love BBQ competitions—the people. I had some left over Q and really wanted to get some feedback from the veterans. We had been talking to Jerry King from Midland, TX and I took him a piece of what we turned in, asking for his honest opinion, what he liked and didn’t like. This man knows his BBQ and gave us some great insights. We did the same with Johnny Trigg and the Rib Tickler crew and both were very helpful. Thanks guys.
The awards are now starting. Chicken no call, Ribs no call. After that we had just figured that we were the rookies and this trip would be a great learning experience regardless. Then we were called: Pork, 4th place. We couldn’t believe it and out of 48 teams. After getting our award I really didn’t even care what was going on after that. Brisket no call. Then it happened. We won Peoples’ Choice and $1,500 bucks. Wow. To tell the truth I had written off the Peoples’ Choice. Earlier we had been running low on our pork sauce and didn’t want to waste what we had on Peoples’ Choice. So on the spot we made a quick sauce, and added it to our Peoples Choice Pulled Pork. So you can guess the shock when our name was called. We had a great time that night celebrating and hanging out with the team.
After breaking down on the road home in the heat of the desert, we finally made it home late Monday night and got a great night’s sleep.
After our competition last weekend in Mesquite, Desert Valley Times posted an article summing up the competition, here’s a selection from the article about Rooftop.
Winning the People’s Choice award was the Rooftop Barbeque team from Lake Elsinore, Calif. This was the team’s second competition.
“We got third in tri-tip and ninth in beef ribs,” said team member Andy Allen of the first competition. “Ever since then we’ve been hooked.”
Their entries came out of a cooker made out of an old propane tank by Keith Henson, the newest member of the team. He’s an ironworker and a welder by trade.
“We worked on this thing diligently night after night,” said Henson. “It took a lot of grinding.”
The long black tank with the smokestack bears a strong resemblance to an old-fashioned steam locomotive, and Henson says he’s considering playing up the resemblance on the next cook he builds. He said he’ll put a rack on the end that will look like the cab to the locomotive.
While the pros are doing the competition cooking, Henson cooks for the cooks.
“I keep these guys fed while they do the cooking,” he said.
Besides winning People’s Choice, Rooftop Barbeque took fourth place in the pork category and 18th in desserts.
Read the whole article here.
What a start! We went into this contest having no idea what it would be like. And only really getting into smoking 4 months before we really were jumping in feet first. It was a great experience. We put our brisket and pork shoulder in at 11:30 and stayed up all night babysitting our fire. (Quick Hint: buy a bbq guru if you enjoy your sleep). The next morning we started getting our boxes ready to present. The worst part of a bbq comp is box turn in the best time is after box turn in, luckly this was a IBCA competition so there was no garnish necessary . We went in to the awards ceremony just expecting to see who won and what we needed to do to improve. Amazingly we took a third in tri-tip and 9th in beef ribs at of 47 teams. Heres are some pictures of the event
Posted by Andy Allen.
Thanks for visiting our blog. We love to share bbq and especially share it with our friends. Were here to share with you the joy of great bbq. In the future we’ll be giving away hints, secrets and great recipes to help you on your own journey. I’ve spent many the hours researching bbq and practicing bbq (just ask my wife), and I feel I need to pass that on to you our readers. We well also be sharing our own journey and updating you on our competitions and other aspects of the bbq world.
Posted by Andy Allen