We're Backkkk.....

Back in 2009, we launched this blog to chronicle our initial journey the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational Barbecue Competition - aka "The Jack.". Billed as the "World Championship of Barbecue", this epicurean "Superbowl" is held in the sleepy little hollow of Lynchburg, TN (pop.361) the 4th Saturday in October each year. It just so happens that Lynchburg is also home to the world renowned Jack Daniels distillery - the primary sponsor and namesake behind this culinary extravaganza.

Each year, tens of thousands of competition BBQ teams from across the United States (and around the world) spend countless hours and weekends competing in sanctioned BBQ events. These teams vie not only for Grand Championships & serious prize money (sometimes as much as $100K) - but perhaps even more importantly, they are all hoping by the end of the "BBQ season" to grab one of the 60 highly coveted spots to cook against an elite group of teams for the title of "world's best" (the "Jack" is by invitation only).

We competed in the 2009 Jack, and finished in the "middle of the pack" - an accomplishment we were certainly proud of. And after more or less taking the year off in 2010, "Hoochie-Que" is ramping up to make another run at a coveted invitation to the Jack in 2011.

So, after over a year of "neglect", we are "dusting off" this little ol' blog to once again share with family, friends, and other BBQ cooks/fans our experiences as we start our journey hopefully towards another invitation to the "Jack" in October 2011.

Also - and especially if you are new to this blog - make certain to read back through the "Blog Archive" to re-visit our experiences and trip to the Jack back in 2009! Some pretty good writing, memories & photos if I do say so myself!

Thanks - and we hope to see you in Lynchburg on October!

March 26, 2011

Sunday, March 27, 2011

A New Season, A New Journey...

Well, after a great BBQ season in 2009 - and taking some time off in 2010 to focus a little more on work, kids, a new BBQ association and associated website (www.IMBBQA.com), working with some new smokers, etc. - I am sitting here this morning, dusting off this ol' blog so that we can once again share with friends & others our "trials & tribulations" as we start down the road hopefully towards another invitation to "The Jack"...

It won't be easy... It never is... Every year tens of thousands of teams across the US vie for one of the 60 coveted invitations to Lynchburg. There are some great new teams out there right now, too - including several in Utah & the Intermountain West - that will make things tough. And of course, things are always dynamic - new sauces, rubs, injections, techniques.

So as we enter into a new competition season, I am excited. But I would be lying if I didn't admit there are plenty of butterflies in my stomach as well! Competition BBQ is definitely an "on any given day" sport of sorts. You have to have some skill - but a little bit of luck certainly comes in handy, too.

We will kick off this season with a rather tough competition in Santa Fe, NM on April 22-23 - the Sam's Club National BBQ Tour, where we will compete against 30 of the country's premier BBQ teams. Nothing like jumping right into the fire! The bad news for us as well is that many of these teams have already been out there competing. Due to the length of our winter, we don't generally get going out here until May unless you drive 12-14 hours to comps in AZ & CA. And this year, well, that just hasn't been possible for us. And in fact, generally Santa Fe would have not been on our radar - but it is a great comp, and a chance to cook with some of the best.

We are looking forward to this season - and unlike our last "visit" with this blog, this time around we hope to share a lot more of what goes on in trying to get to the Jack. We hope you will enjoy!