Morgan Hill Cookoff Grand Champions 2010
We won our second Grand Championship for 2010 amid 52 teams at the Morgan Hill No Bull BBQ cookoff in the city of Morgan Hill, south of San Jose near San Francisco. With two GCs and two 3rd-overall placings in our last four contests, we’re on the roll for 2010. This is a great warm up before our return to the Great American BBQ in Kansas City on May 21-22 where we’ll duke it out with 250 of the best in America. We finished 1st Pork, 3rd chicken, 3rd brisket, and 11th ribs amid a field of 52 teams with one from as far as Utah.
Benny Aduato of Funtime BBQ joined as my new teammate as my regular teammate Mark is taking time off to spend with his family. I met Benny in 2008 when I attended a March Madness backyard practice cookout which was ground zero for our start in competition BBQ. Benny and I hit it off after we cooked together for a KCBS judging class in Orange County in 2009 and I invited him to join me so he could “see the world” as we’re striving for the Jack Daniels Invitational draw in 2010. This is the most prestigious BBQ contest the world and being invited is the Holy Grail of BBQ. I promised myself that I would travel to the ends of the earth and even slay dragons to make the draw this year. We didn’t make the draw last year even though we won 3 GCs and we took a 3-month sidebar after being chosen to be in TLC’s BBQ Pitmasters Season One which we enjoyed tremendously. For 2010, our crazy contest calendar shows we’re cooking in Kansas City, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, California, Canada, and Mexico (maybe) in the coming months in our relentless pursuit of the Jack.
The Wall Street Journal interviewed me and is working on a BBQ story. They sent a photographer Alex of www.afarnum.com to shoot us at this contest on Saturday morning. Alex also took lots of portraits of fellow BBQers and their rigs. The local newspapers also wrote about this event.
I finally got to meet Chris Allingham of the The Virtual Weber Bullet Forum (TVWB) where I served as guest BBQ guru from 2/28 thru 3/4. I shared BBQ secrets and answered 279 posts across 86 topics on his forum and made history as the most popular Q&A guest on this world largest international WSM forum.
We are mobbed by lines 100 feet long as the PC portion was underway at 1 pm. Luckily, Howard Chi our buddy from the Smok’ed Chi BBQ Team and neighbors Black Barrel BBQ pitched in to help. We were sold out by 2:30 pm and had to turn away many people. Next time, we’ve got to cook more meat for the PC portion! We are also tickled we received a perfect score from our Health Dept. inspection report.
A big thanks goes out to Ric Gilbert and Ben Lobenstein for organizing this first class first-year event. Thanks goes to Kelly & Kathleen and Jim Mehl for officiating and to all the judges, helpers, and volunteers. A big thanks goes to my good buddy Chris Juencke for letting us use his FEC500 to heat our PC meats. Congrats to Big B’s Down and Dirty BBQ for RC and to all who took a walk especially the new teams who were inspired to cook after watching BBQ Pitmasters! I was happy to hear from many new teams who learned a lot from the free Ribology 101 and Slap Yo Daddy Lazy Man presentation box clinics I conducted on Fri and Sat.
A big thanks also goes to our terrific Sponsors: Rocks BBQ System for our Stoker temperature control system (it was great to see you John and Kenny in person), T&H Meat and Sausages for our meat products, TheSlabs.com for our rub products, Cajun Grill for our Weber stainless replacement doors, Smokin Guns for our rubs, Butcher BBQ for our injections, and Snake River Farms for our Wagyu meat products.