Tuesday, October 6, 2015


11th Annual Smoke on the Mountain
Official Virginia State Barbecue Championship
Galax, VA 2015

Several months ago we attended an afternoon at the 11th annual 2015 Virginia State Barbecue Cookoff  called "Smoke On The Mountain" in Galax, VA,  that was not only amazing but quite delicious.
Only the best ingredients are used in competition!

So many different techniques and plans

Everyone wanted a special place to people-watch!
Barbecue cookoffs are not only serious business but big business, and to see the grilling methods, equipment and creativity was worth the price of "free" admission.   If you wished to sample the barbecue, you could make a donation (customary $5)  and taste the prepared meat and then vote for what you liked.  That would be called "People's Choice".
The Shed Barbeque and Blues Joint
Ocean Springs, MS and Gulfport, MS

The Shed produces lots of creativity and delicious barbecue in their smoker!
Some entries have no sauce, some have a little, some are swimming in it.  Every portion is a variation of smoky, spicy and sweet.  There is actually a Memphis Barbecue Network Whole Hog Competition complete with judges, on-site judging and blind box judging.  Then there is also a Kansas City Barbecue Society with 4 categories - beef brisket, chicken, pork and ribs...another set of rules and judging methods (blind box only and no on-site).  
Bubba Grills
Wilmington, NC

TarBilly's BBQ
Brenton, West VA

Big Butt BBQ
Charlotte, NC

Sweet-N-Sassy BBQ Company
Spotsylvania, VA

Wolf's Revenge BBQ
Richmond, VA

Boars Night Out Championship Grilling Team
Olive Branch, MS

Little Big John's BBQ
Midway, NC

Nervous Wreck BBQ
Galax, VA
I was unaware that to be a judge you must apply to and pay for a class that teaches you the Memphis or Kansas City standards and what to look for (Lots of hog drama everywhere).  

Past winners, like Bubba Grills, The Shed, Victory Lane BBQ display their trophies proudly, like war totems. At the Galax competition the top winners walk away with coveted custom-made fiddles from world-famous Barrs Fiddle Shop, each emblazoned with their categories.
Barrs Fiddle Shop - Galax, VA
 The reserve grand champion from the Kansas City division wins a mandolin and the grand champion gets a custom-made guitar, $1500, and a slot in the American Royale Kansas City competition.  The winner of the Memphis grand champion wins a custom-made banjo, $2000, a slot in the next MBN Memphis in May world championship contest and a slot in the World Food Championship's barbecue competition in Kissimmee, FL.
Trophies at Smoke in the Mountain
2015 Galax, VA

If you didn't win this year, there's always next year.  
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