Friday, September 24, 2010
North Carolina State Championship Pork Smoke Off
I'm reporting now direct from the 2010 North Carolina State Championship BBQ cook off in Mayberry, NC on September 20th. The event is sponsored by the North Carolina Pork Council - NCPC. The BBQ off moves around the state from year to year, and this year the contest is being held in conjuntion with Mayberry Days. Yes. Of course, Mayberry Days is a celebration of Andy Griffith (and this is the 50th year anniversary for that classic TV show that started before I was born).
The BBQ teams are all set up. There are 24 total, and they had to win some competitions to get a spot in the state event. So, we have here 24 of the best pitmasters across the state now waitng for the whole hogs to come in.
One guy to watch this year is Joe Peterson. He has taken the title the barbecue champ title the past two years, and that's a real big deal in barbecue circles. I hunted him up, and he and his wife and friends were just really super nice. They gave me chicken, corn, and beans and some bread pudding like Grandma used to make.
Before the smoking got started, the judges went around and checked out the set up displays. You may wonder why judges would go look at the tents and smokers. See one - seen them all. Nope. These guys (and a few girls go all out or maybe I should say hog wild on decking out the work areas).
Everyone was waiting for the meat trucks to show up except for maybe the lady who asked if they shoot the pigs there. Really now, it's in city limits. Of course, there's no pig shooting. The pigs come in on a big truck. They are not frozen either as woman asked. You know how long it takes to thaw a turkey. If the teams had to smoke frozen pigs, we'd be sitting there all week.
I don't do whole hog, because they are heavy. I heard weight numbers in the 120 pound plus range. That's a lot of meat and heavy. All hands were on deck as the teams began getting ready for an all night barbecue pig smoke.
I'll have to get some sleep, but I have more photos and stories. I'll share those after I get some shut eye.
Facebook Photo Collection from NC Barbecue Cook Off
If you'd like to read more about the annual NC Barbecue Cook Off, visit Yes You Can Grill where I talk about my first barbecue contest trip.