BBQ sundae, anyone?
June 17, 2011
Since the smell of smoke and barbecue is bound to stick to one’s clothing, it’s probably best to stay as long as possible at the 18th Annual Frisco BBQ Challenge; one wouldn’t want others wondering why you smell like meat.
Those distinctive barbecue scents were already wafting through the air on Friday, right after the event kicked off mid-morning. Crowds started filling Frisco’s Main Street, which was lined with barbecuers eager to dole out their specialties.
Randy White of Smokin’ Sage Grill traveled up from Pueblo with family, friends and even some “road crew.” He competes in about four barbecue challenges a year with his pulled pork, ribs, brisket and teriyaki chicken. His barbecue sauce and side dishes are homemade.
“Buddies we compete with down there said ‘you gotta go up (to Frisco), it’s so nice in the summer and the people are friendly,'” he said. White joked his buddies forgot to mention how steep the road was – his drive up was “a little heavier, but we made it.”
Engine 51 Smokers, which consists of Tex Rabenau and his girlfriend, Jenny Hushaw, traveled 900 miles from Missouri for the event. Members of the Kansas City Barbeque Society, they’ve competed in numerous other competitions, but it’s their first time in Frisco.
“We think we’re the farthest-away team,” Rabenau said.
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He said his own rubs, and the fact that he slow smokes his meat over oak, make Engine 51 unusual.
“A lot of people use hickory, but oak burns high,” Rabenau said.
Scott Dodd, the executive chef from the Wildwood Smokehouse in Vail, is competing with recipes served up everyday at the restaurant, like sliced beef brisket and pork sandwiches.
“We’re gonna take it,” Dodd said of the competition. “It’s basic recipes that are done well.”
Frisco residents Ross Sheely and Luke Wignall were enjoying a mid-morning meal of briskets and beer.
“We’re having breakfast on the street today,” Wignall said. “Nothing but happiness on the streets of Frisco.”
“The Town of Frisco really turns it on,” Sheely said.
Locals weren’t just there to sample the eats, but to serve them up as well.
Students from the Summit High School culinary class ProStart were staffing a booth with their own recipes.
“They’ve made all the food,” said Terri Vantiger, the class instructor. “They’re promoting it, selling it, working it, cleaning it.”
Among the kids’ creations: a BBQ pork “sundae” with barbecue sauce, pulled pork, mashed potatoes with a cherry tomato topping; and a grilled mac-and-cheese barbecue pulled pork sandwich.
“We didn’t want to try to do the same thing that everybody else is,” Vantiger said.
Doug Pierce, owner of Bonnie Q BBQ restaurant and catering company in Dillon, hasn’t missed a Frisco competition since the event started 18 years ago.
“The only secret to good barbecue is start slow and never go faster,” he said.
Pierce’s recipes have placed numerous times in the contest.
“It’s a lot of work getting set up, but once you get here it’s just everybody walking around having a good time,” he said. “All these barbecue guys are a bunch of good old boys.”
The BBQ continues Saturday on Main Street in Frisco, from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. For more information, go to http://www.friscobbq.com.