Monday, May 6, 2013

West Coast BBQ Classic '13 at the Queen Mary

By Dru Chai

May is national BBQ month and 6 days in, I haven't had any BBQ yet. So with a hankering for some Dirty Smoke brisket, I visited my local Restaurant Depot looking for some Angus beef brisket packers and I couldn't find a single one. My guess is that plenty of local BBQ competition teams snapped them up in preparation for the 2nd annual West Coast BBQ Classic this upcoming Saturday on May 11th.

As a BBQ judge at the inaugural event last year, my tasting samples were all over the place. The chicken was fantastic, but the brisket was atrocious. That's just the luck of the draw sometimes. But the competition is a much stronger field this year -- with 60 teams competing, it will just about double last year's turnout. So I have a good feeling that the quality of BBQ will be much improved.

For a BBQ competition and festival, it doesn't get any better than The Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA. With a picturesque view of the waters, grassy, and shady areas, it sure beats an event held at a hot parking lot or a dusty field. If you plan on going, do yourself a favor and go early. There will be a good turnout and who wants to wait in one long line after another? Check out my tips on how to enjoy a BBQ festival.

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