2014 Freeze Que

Image from St. Louis BBQ SocietyWe kicked off the 2014 BBQ competition season at the Freeze Que. The contest is 1 of the 2 major events for the St. Louis BBQ Society (SLBS), the other is the Wildwood BBQ Bash. We set up at the contest located in Webster Groves, in the Roadside 61 Restaurant parking lot. The conditions as you imagine were cold, but there was no blizzard conditions in the forecast…that’s nice. However, the wind affected us as shelves were blown over, canopies were lifted off the ground and with the occasional full unraveling of paper towels, all in all, it was bearable.

For 2014, I will officially compete as Fireside Smokers, my sponsor Fireside Hearth and Home are supporting my BBQ addiction and I’m happy to be part of the team. Joining me at this event is my good friend Jeff Fitter, he has a catering business…Phatso’s BBQ and he’s one of the best pitmasters in St. Louis.

My camera was MIA, hence the lack of photos…the shutters on the lens were stuck as a result of the brisk conditions. That just means uninterrupted beer drinking. It was unfortunate the camera wasn’t working, because we had an excellent cook!

Fireside Smokers Results: (41 teams)

Overall – 4th place
Chicken – 7th place
Ribs – 10th place
Beef – 6th place

One little nugget that happened at the 1-day event was during rib turn-ins, I saw Tom Coghill (Pork Assassins BBQ team and owner of Iron Barley Restaurant) standing next to the turn-in table smoking a cigar. I noticed his box of ribs were in the crate, there was no doubt I want my ribs up against his at the judges table. And as I set my box next to his, he looked at me and jokingly said “Are you sure you want to go up against mine?”. I have so much respect and admiration for this guy, he’s been featured on the Food Network and the Travel Channel, but I really wanted to kick his ass…my ribs 10th place…Tom Coghill’s ribs 11th place.

Despite some great BBQ teams there, we pulled off a good cook to grab 4th place overall. This was the way I wanted to kick off the new year. I feel like Fireside has a great opportunity to compete for the SLBS Team of the Year award, winning in this fashion will help (and maybe a GC or two).