Saturday, October 10, 2015
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
Saturday, October 3, 2015
This year's check in was much more organized than last year. Clearly they learned some lessons last year and everything ran much more smoothly. About a quarter til they came through, scanned tickets, attached wristbands, checked IDs for alcohol sales, and did security checks on bags. When the magic hour of 1 pm arrived, we went straight to the food with no waiting. That was a nice change from last year where all the check ins happened during the VIP magic hour, not before.
We were first in line at Schmidt Family BBQ and got the first slices off a fresh brisket. After that we wandered around to the BBQ booths gathering a couple of samples at a time then checking them out at the well placed tables near the booth. We never had a problem finding a spot to chow down.
There were only 10 BBQ joints in attendance but the food was uniformly good. Standouts to my taste were Black's brisket and garlic sausage, Schmidt Family's brisket, and Louie Mueller's always excellent jalapeno sausage. Heim brought along some candied pork belly, which was an interesting diversion. Not a single rib appeared, which seemed a little strange, but understandable when you can trim tiny samples of brisket, but a rib is a rib and a little tougher to divide. Looking back at last year's event, only Hutchins had ribs.
In addition to the BBQ joints, there were a number of chefs with items that were neither smoked or BBQ. Most I skipped, I got my fill with the excellent BBQ being served, but I did have to try a couple of items. The fried quail did nothing for me but I did like the big shrimp and grits. The shrimp seemed to be grilled, not smoked, but whatever it was, I do like shrimp. The dessert from Haute Sweets was good enough I had to go back for seconds before they let in the general admission folks.
All in all it was a delicious day in a beautiful park with lots of places to sit in the shade and chow down some tasty Q.
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
We all know if you eat good BBQ you really don't need sauce. So what do you do with the BBQ sauce you receive? Usually my Mrs mixes it in with meatloaf or uses it to baste chicken or pork. However last night I poured some over some plain rice and found it rocked as a BBQ side dish. So what do you do with the sauce when your BBQ is too good for it?
Saturday, September 19, 2015
Friday, September 11, 2015
It has been several years since I had purchased tix to this fest. My buddy Dave in Austin has done the honors the last few years since I have usually been off bass fishing when they went on sale. This year Dave was out of the country and I was not fishing so I sat patiently at my keyboard as 10 am approached. I don't know what happened, but the Long Center website was down for about 20 minutes right at 10 am when tickets were supposed to go on sale. Very frustrating to say the least. However after lots of reloads, it finally popped up and I was able to snag us 3 VIP tix. We're looking forward to another fun time in Austin.
The Long Center ticket website seems to be the source of the problem. Three days later I received an e-mail telling me the print at home tickets I had received were no good due to an error and they would need to send me new ones. Then I got 2 more e-mails with "recall" in the subject line and over 70 e-mail addresses in the CC. Not cool. Finally I received a 4th e-mail with the corrected tickets. I wonder how many folks will show up with bad tickets?
Saturday, September 5, 2015
There were 2 different public BBQ events at the fest. The first was the People's Choice event on Saturday. For $12, you got 10 tickets to visit participating cook sites. About 1/3 of the KCBS cooks were in the event. My wife and I combined our tickets and we were able to sample most of the joints. Basically you just wandered around to the different stations, identified by a small sign, and picked up samples. At the end, you gave one or both of your poker chips to those you enjoyed the most.
The second event was on Sunday and was billed as the Battle of the BBQ. It was similar to the event Saturday, only this time the contestants were the food vendors at the festival. This time there were far fewer players, 12 I think, which meant we had coupons left over. We simply went back and got more samples from our favorite.