Throughout the competition BBQ season, our BBQ Guru team makes many trips – both near and far – and gains an appreciation for the distinctive personalities of the different competitions. Like a good BBQ spread, the competition circuit offers an array of different flavors and, after many seasons, you begin to get a taste for which competitions you enjoy the most. Last weekend, we packed up the trailer and headed to one of our favorite destinations of the season: The New Jersey State BBQ Championship in North Wildwood, NJ.
There are many reasons why we look forward to this event every year. It’s a well organized and local competition, we get to see many of our good friends who compete, and of course it doesn’t hurt that it’s held right next to the beach.
We arrived Friday morning to beautiful weather and set up shop about 50 yards from the North Wildwood beachfront. We met up with friends, had some cold beers, and were all set for a picture perfect weekend. Even a massive storm that came through that evening and flooded the competition parking lot couldn’t dampen the mood.
The NJ State Championship has a fun tradition. At the cook’s meeting on Friday night, they announce a “secret ingredient” for an Iron Chef style competition. This year’s ingredient was a whole turkey. We chose to roast the turkey breast in the Onyx Oven with a BBQ rub and turn in a roast turkey club on sour dough bread with basil infused mayo. We thought it looked and tasted great – we finished in the top 3rd for that competition.
The main event was an even greater success. We feel like we turned in great food and thankfully it showed in the results. We took 3rd overall out of 66 teams.
We are also very proud to report that our sponsored team, Fat Angel, took Grand Champion. Our good friends Lo’-N’-Slo’ BBQ took Reserve Grand Champion, using a DigiQ on their cooker. That means the top three teams all used BBQ Guru products, setting up a “Guru sweep”! We’re thrilled to see more and more teams every year using BBQ Guru products and having such success with them.
As we pulled onto the Garden State Parkway out of North Wildwood we couldn’t help but feel a little sad that it was over. However, we’ll be back. Our third place finish guarantees us a spot in the event next year. ‘Til next year, North Wildwood!