"I find it really hard to stop eating BBQ food- I can't get enough!"
Competing in last year’s World Championships in Memphis inspired us to create the range of ribs, brisket, pulled pork and chicken wings that’s in store now. We’re passionate about BBQ food so we returned to Memphis this year to compete against the best of the best and get inspiration for next year!
The competition runs from Thursday to Saturday and consists of teams from all around the world. It was fantastic working with the team out there – they all pulled their weight and worked terrifically in the hot muggy conditions.
In preparation for the judges coming to our stand we had to do everything from hoovering the floor to cleaning the picket fence outside. This is Leanne, our customer planner, who helped to decorate our stand. You’re scored on product, appearance and cleanliness and Leanne and Roz made sure the Asda stand looked the very best it could. They made chair covers out of pillow cases, put up UK and US flags and set up a proper dinner table for the judges to eat at. Roz and the chefs did an amazing job dressing the tables to really showcase the ingredients and products and Dermott’s melon carving of the Asda boat and BBQ brought us a lot of attention! The judges really enjoyed our cool rustic display – one of the judges said it was the best stand appearance they had ever seen.
This was one of the three judges who came and judged our Butcher’s Selection Cherrywood smoked ribs on our stand. She gave us some tremendous feedback saying our ribs were tender, the sauce was to die for and they fell off the bone perfectly! She scored us 10/10 – a great achievement by the team. We ate so much BBQ food whilst out there tasting some amazing flavours. I find it really hard to stop eating BBQ food – I can’t get enough of it!
The was the team nextdoor playing the banjo! They called themselves “Refined Swine” and had spent two weeks building their own BBQ. All the team names were really creative, from the Hogfather to Sweet Swine of Mine – they were very entertaining! We saw some amazing BBQs out there – even a Nascar car with a BBQ as an engine.
The Beef Brisket had to be taken to the judges on Friday afternoon in a “blind box” for them to taste – this was the team heading towards the judges tent. Mark was carrying the sacred box as we couldn’t afford to drop it! The guys spent over six hours smoking and preparing the ribs and if we dropped the box at the final hurdle it would have all been for nothing – no pressure!
We also met Adam Richman – TV’s Man vs Food – and he chatted to us for half an hour about football. He was showing us pictures of famous footballers he had met and shared a few stories including him playing football in England for a local Sunday league team in Doncaster! He was a real down to earth guy, it was a highlight to meet him.
Overall it was a great experience. As passionate BBQ enthusiasts the team can now work on developing a stronger range for next year picking up on the flavours and trends we saw whilst on the trip.