Monthly Archives: September 2011

A Couple of Contests…

We’ve all made it halfway through the week!  WOOHOO!!  To help you get through the rest of the week, here’s the scoop on some contests currently going on…

  • Kevin’s BBQ Joints has partnered up with Southern Soul Barbeque in St. Simon’s Island, GA to give away three sets of their BBQ sauces to celebrate their release to market!  You can enter this giveaway here.
  • Wanted to try Pig of the Month BBQ but haven’t had a chance?  There is currently a giveaway going on right now on Susan’s Disney Family.
  • And, as always, BBQ Sauce Reviews has their Free Sauce Friday’s.  This week the giveaway will feature Oregon Dan’s BBQ Sauce.  Visit Brian’s site at http://www.bbqsaucereviews.com on Friday for details!
Let me know if I missed your contest, and I’ll gladly add it!

Pay No Attention to This Blog Post

I’m just testing something out for work…  don’t mind me.  Wheeeee!!!!!  As my thanks for reading this, here’s some food porn.

Large pulled BBQ plate

Large pulled BBQ plate

Disney Food Porn Part 2 — Be Jealous

My wife and I arrived back home to the Carolinas from a 9 day stay at Walt Disney World.  One of our splurges for this trip was dinner at Victoria & Albert’s at the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.  If you are ever considering dinner here, I highly encourage you to do so!  It is not only exquisite food, it is the ultimate dining experience.

So I’ve decided to share some more food photos with you from our trip to Disney.  These first three pictures were from other Disney dining destinations.

Tanzanian chocolate crème brûlée from California Grill

Tanzanian chocolate crème brûlée from California Grill

Fisherman's Stew from Kouzzina

Fisherman's Stew from Kouzzina

Cast Iron Seared Veal Tenderloin from California Grill

Cast Iron Seared Veal Tenderloin from California Grill

The pictures below are from our meal at Victoria & Albert’s.  Enjoy!

Amuse-bouche

Amuse-bouche

Applewood-smoked Buffalo "Waldorf"

Applewood-smoked Buffalo "Waldorf"

Roasted Alaskan Sablefish with Arugula Pudding

Roasted Alaskan Sablefish with Arugula Pudding

Roasted Quail with Asian Pears and Serrano Ham Jus

Roasted Quail with Asian Pears and Serrano Ham Jus

Australian Kobe-style Beef Tenderloin

Australian Kobe-style Beef Tenderloin

Hawaiian Kona Chocolate Souffle with Chocolate Ice Cream

Hawaiian Kona Chocolate Souffle with Chocolate Ice Cream

Food Porn from Walt Disney World

This week has been a hectic week… funny how that happens on vacation!  But it’s inevitable whenever you’re at the “Happiest Place on Earth” — Walt Disney World!

One of the things my wife and I look forward to on our trips to Disney is the food.  Formerly an afterthought, the cuisine at Walt Disney World is now on par with many of the top dining destinations in the Orlando area.  Here is a very small sampling of some of the food that we have eaten so far here this week.

Enjoy!

Bacon Cheeseburger & Fries from Beaches and Cream

Bacon Cheeseburger & Fries from Beaches and Cream

"No Way Jose" Sundae from Beaches and Cream

"No Way Jose" Sundae from Beaches and Cream

Maple Crème brûlée from Le Cellier Steakhouse

Maple Crème brûlée from Le Cellier Steakhouse

 

Remnants of a "Bumblebee" (half Guinness, half Boddington's)

Remnants of a "Bumblebee" (half Guinness, half Boddington's)

Spicy Kazan Roll from California Grill

Spicy Kazan Roll from California Grill

Cast-Iron Seared Bison Tenderloin from California Grill

Cast-Iron Seared Bison Tenderloin from California Grill

Mixed Grill from Raglan Road Irish Pub

Mixed Grill from Raglan Road Irish Pub

Shrimp Po-Boy from Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory

Shrimp Po-Boy from Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory

Doomer’s Q Sauce — Doing it Maryland Style

When Todd “Doomer” Dooms offered to let me review his sauce, Doomer’s Q Sauce, I decided to do a little research.  The reoccurring theme I kept seeing over and over and over again was “Maryland style”.  What exactly is Maryland style?  Let’s find out, shall we…

Doomer's Q Sauce -- Original

Doomer's Q Sauce -- Original

Todd developed his original sauce in 2005, and it was an instant hit among family and friends.  When one of his friends asked to fill up a squeeze bottle with his sauce, that’s when he knew he had a marketable product on his hands.  Soon after, he added a Hot and Spicy flavor as well as a Dark flavor to his line of sauces.

The quality that Dooms talks about the most in his sauces is their versatility.  He admits to making his sauces thinner than a normal sauce so that it can be used as an injection, cooking sauce, dipping sauce, and much more.

Okay, enough talking… let’s eat!

Naked Observations

As I poured out the sauce, I definitely noticed that it was a bit thinner than a traditional Kansas City style sauce yet not as thin as a vinegar-based sauce.  It has a very nice dark red color to it, and in the photo below you can see there are plenty of spices evenly distributed throughout the sauce.

Sauce Swatch

Sauce Swatch

So I decided to take a test.  At this point I find out exactly what he means by “Maryland style”.  It’s balance.  There is a definite trio of sweet, tangy, and peppery at work here in this sauce.  None of the predominant flavor profiles completely overwhelms the others, but I definitely noticed the peppery flavors the most.  This is not a bad thing, in my opinion.

To the Meat of the Matter

I decided to put this sauce to test in two scenarios — as a finishing sauce and as a condiment.  The first test — burgers.  Nice, juicy burgers.

Mmmmm burger...

Mmmmm burger...

Burger Porn

Burger Porn

Grilled up some burgers using 80/20 ground beef.  In the last five minutes, I sauced the burgers very liberally with Doomer’s Q Sauce.

Saucy Burger Porn

Saucy Burger Porn

The sauce gave the burgers a nice reddish tint to the meat.  Upon a taste test, I found that the sauce did not apply a lot of sweetness to the burger, but blended in quite nicely.  Juicy and savory, I decided to eat two of them that night.  Sorry, no photographic evidence.  But I promise I did!

The second test — the condiment test.  I had some leftover pulled pork in the freezer, and I decided (and by me, I mean my wife) to make some pulled pork sandwiches.

Pulled Pork with Doomer's Q Sauce

Pulled Pork with Doomer's Q Sauce

As you can see, the sauce is thin enough to somewhat penetrate the meat, but thick enough to still remain on top.  The tangy and sweet worked well with the pork, but it was the peppery flavor profiles that stood out to me the most.  Very nice!!

If this is Maryland style BBQ at a glance, I can definitely become a fan!

You can find Doomer’s Q Sauce online at http://www.doomersonline.com.  You can also find him on Facebook and Twitter.

Drawing for the Mojobricks and Draper’s Giveaway

Thank you to Fred Grosse of Mojobricks and Shane Draper of Draper’s BBQ for being a part of this giveaway!  Also a great big thank you to everyone that entered the contest — there were 123 entries for this contest.  A great turnout!  I wish I could send everyone something.  Unfortunately, there can only be two winners.

Using Random.org, the following names were picked:

25 — gregsgrillin
59 — neilbu (Twitter)

I have contacted the winners.  Please reply to me within 24 hours with your mailing address so I can get the prizes shipped out to you.  Thank you once again to everyone that entered!

Big on the Pig at Time Warner Cable BBQ and Blues

This past weekend, Charlotte rolled out the welcome mat to some of the top Memphis Barbecue Network teams in the country for Time Warner Cable BBQ and Blues.  This will mostly be a picture montage.  If you want to see more photos from the event (as well as possibly a recap from a judge’s perspective), go visit the blog of my friend Steve Gibbs at http://q4fun.blogspot.com.

Thursday during lunch rewarded the first 300 people to the Wells Fargo Atrium during lunch (of which I was one of the first 300) with free BBQ from one of 2 Charlotte-area vendors — Mac’s Speed Shop and Rock Store Bar-B-Q.  Everyone there was also treated to a concert and gumbo courtesy of Bill Wharton, better known as the Sauce Boss.

The event itself started on Friday.  Teams loaded in Friday morning, and the venue was opened to the public Friday afternoon.  I took off immediately after work to get a decent parking place.  The layout of the venue had the competing teams (both in the professional and backyard divisions) situated caddy-cornered from the vending areas and other attractions.

Since I was only able to attend on Friday, I decided to go around and take a few photos.  (The gallery will contain some of the photos already shown above)

Results from the competition can be found at http://www.charlottebbqandblues.com/competitions/2011-team-placements/.  The results only show the top 5 for each of the professional categories and the top 3 for each category in the backyard division.

Guest Post — That’s How I Roll: Grilled Eggplant Rolls with Feta

Throughout my adventures in the world of BBQ, I have had the pleasure of meeting many people.  Some I have met in person, while others I talk with online on a daily basis.  One of these people is Lea Richards, the founder and owner of Pig of the Month BBQ.

Lea founded Pig of the Month BBQ, a nationwide mail order barbecue company, in 2010 as a bootstrapped venture.  She quickly learned how to leverage her expertise in marketing and public relations to grow her business in an economical and efficient manner.  Lea shares her knowledge with other entrepreneurs around the country.  Her efforts have gotten her recognition in such publications as the New York Times, Food & Wine Magazine, and Food Network Magazine.

Today, I’m proud to share with you this recipe written by Lea Richards of Pig of the Month BBQ:


I’m always in search of a great grilled side dish that is both easy and healthy and this one combines everything I love most:  A nice, salty cheese,  perfect fall vegetables with nice grill marks, and fresh herbs to dress everything up.

Greek Grilled Stuffed Eggplant

Greek Grilled Stuffed Eggplant

Greek Grilled Stuffed Eggplant
Yield: 4 Servings

  • 1/4 cup feta cheese
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 green onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • (1) 1-lb eggplant, cut lengthwise into 8 slices
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing eggplant slices
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp Extra-virgin olive oil

Directions:

  1. Combine feta, red onion, green onions, 1 Tbsp basil, pepper, and 1/4 tsp salt in a medium bowl.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-high. Lightly brush eggplant slices with olive oil. Grill eggplant slices until marked and tender, about 2 to 4 minutes per side.  Transfer to a platter and cool slightly.
  3. Assemble rolls by placing about 2 Tbsp of tomato mixture on the wider end of eggplant. Roll up tightly and place seam side down on serving platter or just dollop on top of flat eggplant slices.
  4. Whisk together lemon juice, remaining basil, 1/4 tsp salt and 2 tsp of olive oil in a small bowl and drizzle over rolls.

Once again, thank you to Lea Richards of Pig of the Month BBQ for taking the time to come up with this recipe for Big Wayner’s BBQ Blog!  All I can say is that looks super tasty and super-easy to prepare!

Pig of the Month BBQ can be found online at http://www.pigofthemonth.com as well as on Facebook.  If you are interested in connecting with Lea on Twitter, you can find her on there as @IheartBBQ.  I highly recommend following her!

If you are interested in contributing a guest article to Big Wayner’s BBQ Blog, send me an email to bigwaynerbbq@gmail.com.

BBQ in Bulk: Judging the Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour

For those of you keeping up with the competition circuit, you’re probably aware of the Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour.  Sam’s Club has partnered with KCBS in putting on a BBQ tournament.  Teams compete in 25 local and regional contests throughout the country for the opportunity to travel to Bentonville, AR to compete in a national contest.  With over $400,000 in total prize money dispersed at all of the events, many teams jumped at the chance to enter.

I was able to get in and judge at the Greensboro, NC contest.  This contest was a feeder to the regional event in Laurel, MD.  Thirty teams were present at this event (as is the case for all local Sam’s Club events).  Since my wife had to be in Raleigh by 9:00am, we decided to carpool.  What does this mean?  I got there WAY ahead of the 9:30am start for judges check-in.  I was able to go around and get a few pictures.

Later that morning, several of us judges assisted in putting together the trophies for this competition.

Now on to the food!  Overall, I thought the food was about on par for a good competition.  There were some entries that were middle of the road, and there were some entries that were absolutely excellent!  Only one of the entries was below what I expected for good competition BBQ.

For the event itself, I was concerned that there would just be the focus on the competition aspect.  However, when I arrived, I found at least 3 or 4 different entities there that were either demoing cooking or touting the heavenly qualities of meat.  In between judging entries, I peeked outside of the judging area and saw steady crowds checking out the area.  So my worries were for naught.

If you want to view more photos taken at the event, you can go to the photo album on my Facebook page.  All in all, the event went well!  Big thanks to the organizers, Jerry and Joyce Gardner, as well as the KCBS representatives, Don and Debbie Harwell.  This event was lucky in that the organizers had ample time to work out any kinks demonstrated at earlier events in the series.  Would I want to judge this again?  Yeah, I would.

Mojobricks and Draper’s BBQ Giveaway

I’m super excited to bring this giveaway to you!  This contest features two of the hottest up-and-coming products on the BBQ competition circuit – Mojobricks ™ and Draper’s BBQ.

I have never had the chance to try out MojoBricks™, but from everything I have read they are an excellent wood source to use for your Big Green Egg, Primo Grill, Ole Hickory, Jambo, or any type of cooker.  MojoBricks™ are an all-natural 100% wood product cut into brick shape.  Available in “Fred Oak”, Maple, and Cherry flavors, MojoBricks™ contains no fillers or binders.  Its smaller size makes it much easier to transport than traditional wood logs, and the absence of creosote gives it a cleaner burn.  I could go on about various facts regarding MojoBricks™, but I prefer to let a couple of people who have used the product speak for themselves:

“Since we began using MojoBricks™, we have had a truly consistent run of success… I’m a believer!” – Kit Rudd, Pitmaster of Degüello BBQ

“I was really impressed with the smoke flavor and the smoke ring they (MojoBricks™) helped me develop. I was so impressed with them that I use them in my catering business daily.  Even my 4 year old daughter says “MojoBricks™ makes good smelling smoke!”” – Neil Strawder, Pitmaster of BigMista BBQ

“… it helped cut my use of charcoal by about ½ of what I would use… I don’t have to worry about moisture content or how long it’s seasoned.  I know that when I put a brick in my pit, I will get the same results every time.” – James R. Tindall, Pitmaster of Big JT’s Smokin BBQ.

As you all know, I am a huge fan of Draper’s BBQ Sauce and Rub.  And when Shane approached me about doing a giveaway in collaboration with Fred Grosse of MojoBricks™, I was quite eager!  So I know what you’re here to find out…  how in the world do I enter??  There are three ways to enter!  You can do one, two, or all three:

  1. Leave a comment on this blog post telling me which flavor of MojoBricks you would pick if you win.
  2. Tweet about this contest on Twitter using the following statement: “I want my @MOJOBRICKS and @drapersbbq from @brownkw!”  You can enter once a day by doing this.
  3. Become a fan of MojoBricks™ and Draper’s BBQ on Facebook.  You’ll need to let me know that you became a fan of these fine companies.  If you already are, then great!

This contest will end at 11:59pm EST on Tuesday, September 13.  I will draw two lucky winners using Random.org to win the following prizes:

  • One pack of MojoBricks™ in your choice of “Fred Oak”, Maple, or Cherry flavors.
  • One bottle of Draper’s Smokin’ BBQ sauce
  • One bottle of Draper’s A.P. BBQ Rub.

Good luck!

UPDATE: I just received an email from Fred Gross of MojoBricks™ with some really good news.  From now until the contest winner is announced, you can take 35% off of your order at http://www.mojobricks.com just by mentioning my name (Wayne Brown) and coupon code WAYNEBROWN.  It’s hard to beat that deal, so take advantage of it while it lasts!!

ANOTHER UPDATE: Shane Draper of Draper’s BBQ just contacted me.  He is extending his Labor Day sales event through the end of this contest!  All products discounted at least $1, and some packages are discounted by up to 20%!  Take advantage of getting a great product at sweet price by going to http://www.drapersbbq.com/store today!