Wildomar? Never heard of it. Let along the BBQ competition. Meat Inc. invited me out and since they didn’t disappoint last time I had to honor their invitation. Sadly I made the mistake of not looking at the map until the day of. For the first time living in California I took freeways I have never heard of the 101, to the 10, to the 15, 71, 91 and some small road off a main street. God only knows I am in for a treat. I pull into the dirt filled parking lot struggling to find my way through all the dust. Dust does wonders for my camera by the way, but I’m over 90 miles committed so there is no turing around.
Just when the dust clears I notice a huge carnival at the entrance to the BBQ Competition. Wildomar is near Lake Elsinore, which means it’s in the middle of nowhere. Carnivals are a magnet for interesting people and running along side a BBQ Competition only fuels my already excited fire. As soon I am through the entrance I can see more activity than at my local gay bar in West Hollywood and that’s looking in from the street. Meat Inc. never disappoints and now I have struck entertainment gold. Between the BBQ, beautiful women, and interesting people endless amounts of entertainment await me.
At the last BBQ competition I had the chance to get to know Meat Inc. and what its like to be a BBQ judge. This time I wanted to get to know everybody and find out what everyone is about. This way you the reader can find out what you're missing. I don’t want to waste anymore time so I went right up to Rooftop Barbeque and this is what they had to say:
MEAT ME: So what is Rooftop Barbeque?
Rooftop Barbeque: I like to call ourselves the under dog team. We have been around for 3 years and everything we do we make ourselves. We make our own rub. We make our own sauce. All our products we make. We come up with our own recipes and we cook it on a grill that we made ourselves. We do have a couple of pellet smokers that we got sponsored with and that helps us get a little extra sleep but when were doing the big cooks that’s our baby right there (points to his giant barrel smoker). I am a welder (armor) by trade and I’m from the south and I have been eating barbeque my whole life. I am a huge fan and that’s what we are all about. We’re a huge family oriented team and our goal is to win a Grande Championship on a grill we made ourselves.
MEAT ME: Where are you from originally?
Rooftop Barbeque: Originally I am from Georga. These guys (points at his time) are all from out here in California) Lake Elsinore. Yea, we are a local team. What I would like to do is sample all of our stuff to you so you can see what we are all about.
This is our… Do you know who Scott Roberts is?
MEAT ME: No.
Rooftop Barbeque: He is a BBQ Critic and he named our sauce, Sauce of the Year. This is our Chipotle Molasses Sauce. So taste the sweet first and the heat kick’s in a little bit later.
MEAT ME: It's funny you can feel it on the middle of the tongue and then on the side of my tongue. (It’s defiantly one of the more stimulating flavors I have tasted.) It’s really good.
Rooftop Barbeque: This is our competition rub and it’s got a little bit of vanilla in it, little garlic, I would just wet your finger and dab it on your tongue.
MEAT ME: It’s good its really sweet.
Rooftop Barbeque: This is our jalapeno peach jam. It acts like a meat glaze. A lot of people really like this. I have even heard of people putting it on shrimp.
MEAT ME: It’s good. Wow you really feel that jalapeno later. Cause it’s like you get the texture and then, “Oh Shit! That’s gonna heat up!” (I laughed I was so surprised.)
Rooftop Barbeque: Some people say it is not hot enough for them. You know when your trying to push stuff like this you want it to taste good and you don’t want it to over power. So that’s kind a what we are going for. It think it accents the meat really well. I personally think our sauce is better than anything you’ve tasted at the grocery store. I do. One thing is we use a more expensive molasses; we don’t put water in our sauce. We use a honey clover for our sauce as well and you can taste it in the ingredients. When you go to pour our sauce out it takes forever to come out. It’s thick and it is good stuff. It’s good on chicken it’s good on ribs, it’s good on just about anything.
You can check them out at: http://rooftopbarbeque.com/
LIKE them on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/rooftopbbq
Their samples definitely ranked up there with some of the more interesting things I have tasted. I consider myself more old fashioned and classic in the tasting department. I don’t like to get too adventurous, I like the less is more approach to simple fatty foods. If it’s something complex I feel like I have to work a little bit and not enjoy it as much. I feel out of my comfort zone. Don’t get me wrong I love trying new things; I am probably just suffering from “old ways” (aka fat and lazy) as I get older.
I turned my head and was drawn in by the beautiful young ladies over at Southfork BBQ. Like every man I suffer from the disease of being attracted towards a pretty smile and the desire to fill my belly. These ladies were kind enough to pose for a few photos for you and talk about what makes them special...
MEAT ME: So where are you guys from?
Sourthfork BBQ Girls: We are from Wildomar, CA it is owned by Ron Guglielmana. He has more than 20 years experience doing all types of corporate events, catering, and private parties.
MEAT ME: Is it all catering? Is there a restaurant?
Southfork BBQ Girls: It is all catering. He has a huge 20 food BBQ that he brings and travels all over California. Sometimes he goes out of state but mostly California. Tri-tip is his big thing. He does prime rib; he does a Mahi Mahi that is bomb. His menu’s are all on the website.
You can check out Southfork BBQ at: http://web.mac.com/sfr4vg/Southfork_Catering/Welcome.html
Short and sweet! These ladies are masters in the art of “don’t tell me all the information” so I go to the website because I think you hiding something or have a secret. Then they’ll want me to hire their catering company so I can find out about all the wonderful goods and services they offer.
Luckily I work in advertising and didn’t fall for their little consumer trap, so I walk away before I got sucked in even more.
I drop my gear at Meat Inc. and say a quick hi. Right behind me I see When Pigs Fly and I remember them from Santa Anita and I thought they did pretty well so lets go see what their deal is.., Ha when pigs fly?
MEAT ME: So what is the story behind the name?
When Pigs Fly: When Pigs Fly and that’s what I called it when my husband told me he wanted to do this. So I said, “When Pigs Fly.”
Our very first contest he did his very first brisket that he ever cooked. He hadn’t really done any of this before. He like that he’s very spontaneous.
MEAT ME: Who is he?
When Pigs Fly: Dale Ginos and we are from Vista California. He made enough money to pay for all the smokers and everything he bought. We were stuck at that point.
MEAT ME: So you were committed?
When Pigs Fly: He was in and happy and I was stuck. (I laugh)
MEAT ME: So what is your specialty?
When Pigs Fly: Of the meat, probably our brisket or our pulled pork. I am really excited about our chicken today, we made a lot of changes to it and we think may be we have nailed the chicken. What I am know for on this circuit is my Smoked Peach Cobbler which is in the smoker right now.
MEAT ME: Really! (Excited) I am a pie connoisseur myself so I love pies.
When Pigs Fly: Oh Really!
MEAT ME: So how long have you guys been doing this?
When Pigs Fly: 7 years. I think it is 7 years. Seven. Long. Years.
MEAT ME: How many competitions do you guys usually do every year?
When Pigs Fly: We used to do about 5 or 6, but I actually quit my day job at the first of the year because this is too much to juggle. So I have been trying to let him compete a lot this year. We have already done about a half a dozen. He better start making some good money or we are going to run out of money. It is not a cheap hobby.
MEAT ME: You guys did really well at Santa Anita this year. Right?
When Pigs Fly: Yeah. We got 2nd in Brisket.
MEAT ME: Did you guys do Vegas?
When Pigs Fly: We did and out of 112 top team in the nation; actually the world. There were teams there from the UK. There was one right next to us from the UK. There is another team that is here this weekend from the UK. We got 20th in Pulled Pork we were pretty excited that we got called at all.
You can check out When Pigs Fly at: http://www.whenpigsflycatering.com/
I can’ t believe I missed the pie. So disappointed in myself. Oh well gives me a reason to come back next time.
Now its time to submit the BBQ to the judges. I went back to Meat Inc. to get a little insight into what he goes through to prep the food.
MEAT ME: Is this your first time at Wildomar? How many times?
MEAT Inc: This is their third annual event - I've been to this event the last two years.
MEAT ME: Why Wildomar, what makes is so special? It seems like its held in a small town…
MEAT Inc: I live in Murrieta - about 4 miles away. You can't pass up an opportunity to cook in your own back yard with lots of support from your local friends and family! It is a small town but the sense of community is awesome!
MEAT ME: What are the different categories you are being judged for today?
MEAT Inc: Today we cooked the four standard KCBS meats - chicken, pork ribs, pulled pork, and brisket. In addition we had an extra meat category - Beef Ribs. The scores from the Beef Ribs don't count toward the overall scores and winner of the contest but it's always fun to cook some extra meats!
MEAT ME: What sort of step do you have to take when preparing chicken, ribs, and brisket etc?
MEAT Inc: All the meats take extra effort to pick out the best. What you are looking for in each meat is enough for a whole separate article. Basically most of the meats are trimmed, shaped, and then could be injected, brined, and dry rubbed - all before their cooked.
MEAT ME: Why do you use the parsley?
MEAT Inc: We have to. Well... the official rules say that we don't have to but I don't know anyone that has a big enough set of... um... so sure of themselves and their meat that they could by pass setting up the box for presentation. You can use a list of green things for the bottom of the box and presentation and there's a list of things you can't use. Some newer teams have been disqualified for using something they weren't supposed to. Also - should be pointed out that the judges aren't supposed to judge the presentation using any of the greens. I'm sure you can't find one judge that will agree (off the record of course) that a box will win not using greens.
MEAT ME: What happens if you are late delivering the food to the judges?
MEAT Inc: We have a turn in time with a 5-minute window on either side. Chicken turn in time is usually at 12. So from 11:55 - 12:04:59 we can turn in. If the clock hits 12:05 - you are disqualified. 10 minutes sounds like a big window but when you are cooking 4 plus meats plus maybe some meats for People's Choice, all kinds of things can happen. We've been late once for a side competition but I could not serve the judges meat that wasn't cooked properly. We were 20 seconds late. Sucked because I think we had a shot at that one too. The meat doesn't always participate!
MEAT ME: What category do you think you will do the best in here today?
MEAT Inc: We're pretty good at chicken. The rest is kind of a crapshoot and we don't have any loft expectations. It would be nice to get a walk on Beef Ribs - I've got some beauties today!
MEAT ME: How does it feel to win 2nd in Beef Ribs? What do you get?
MEAT Inc: We got some really nice beef ribs from our friends at T & H Meats in San Marcos. Hand picked out of a few cases. We had a secret trick up our sleeve that helped us get a 1st at another competition last summer. We played that hand again and with a solid presentation, the scores came up for us. 2nd place took home $400 which is great because we're real close to breaking even on this event counting our People's Choice so I will probably be able to sleep in the house tonight!
You can check out MEAT Inc. at: http://meatinc.blogspot.com/
LIKE Meat Inc. on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Meatinc
Follow Meat Inc. on Twitter @meatinc
Just across the way from Aaron I noticed a booth selling giant bacon wrapped hot dogs. I just had to find out what the were all about.
MEAT ME: So are you guy’s apart of the competition?
Raul’s Concessions: Nawh.
MEAT ME: So what is your specialty?
Raul’s Concessions: The bacon wrapped dawgs. We have garlic fries. But that ain’t meat. Philly Cheese Steak… You know it’s a West Coast style Cheese Steak, we don’t do East Coast because people out here like they like sharper cheese like nacho, something like that. It’s different it taste good.
MEAT ME: How long have you guys been doing this?
Raul’s Concessions: For 8 years. This is all we do for a living.
MEAT ME: So you guys are mobile?
Raul’s Concessions: Yeah mobile. We go Cisco, San Diego, Arizona, Nevada, and everything in between.
MEAT ME: Is there more of you or just one?
Raul’s Concessions: We do 2 at a time. It depends where ever they have a dollar we try to get there. This is what we do.
You can contact Raul’s Concessions at: email@example.com
Or by phone at: (909) 322-2194
I am sure he would love to hear from you.
I could not help but notice on the other side of the park there was the rookie team I met at Santa Anita All Kinds of BBQ that actually placed at their first event. I knew I had to go back and find out what they were up too.
All Kinds of BBQ: Are you with the event?
MEAT ME: No actually I am my own thing… (handover the card)
All Kinds of BBQ: Oh my gosh, we Twitter you all the time!
MEAT ME: That’s funny. So Santa Anita was your first event?
All Kinds of BBQ: It was our first event.
MEAT ME: So what is your full name?
All Kinds of BBQ: All Kinds of BBQ
MEAT ME: Did you guys place at Santa Anita?
All Kinds of BBQ: We placed in two categories. We placed 9th in Chicken and 6th in Ribs. That was our first competition. This is our second.
MEAT ME: What is your specialty?
All Kinds of BBQ: I don’t know I am kind of partial to the ribs, but then again I think the chicken is amazing. They don’t have a category for Tri-Tip here but we nail it every time. Yeah, every time. People who have only had the Tri-Tip think that is what he is famous for.
MEAT ME: Where are you guys based? Do you have a restaurant?
All Kinds of BBQ: Glendora, CA. No this is a mobile catering business.
MEAT ME: How long have you guys been doing this?
All Kinds of BBQ: We have been doing BBQ for 10 years but we officially made it a business last year.
MEAT ME: Where are you guys from originally?
All Kinds of BBQ: Well I am from Santa Ana, Orange County and he is from Whittier, California.
You can check out All Kinds of BBQ at: http://allkindsofbbq.com/index.html
Follow All Kinds of BBQ on Twitter @AllKindsOfBBQ
If there is one thing I miss about being a kid it's being awesome and not having a care in the world of what other people think. Being able to dance and move to a beat like it is no bodies business. This is exactly what I ran into before the awards ceremony...
Please take a moment to enjoy the awesomeness that is Breakdance BBQ Kid...
I hope you enjoyed that as much as I did. Now it all comes down to business. Who's meat was tastier, flavorier, and textureier than everybody else's. Who came here to do work, to be crowned the king of the meat?
All the players gather round in anticipation as to who will be crowed the next King of BBQ! The smokiest of the smokeys.
After the judges have already made up their minds the kids get together and talk about what they really think about the judges. I believe I even over heard one of them saying, "It's no Happy Meal but it will do!"The new king is crowned Left Coast Q is the Grand Champion at Wildomar BBQ Competition 2012.
Aaron Black of Meat Inc. picked up 2nd place in Beef Ribs. Congratulations to them on job well done.
Here is a link to the official results: http://www.kcbs.us/events.php?id=3217
It was a long day and well worth it. I saw more beautiful things at this event than all the others combined. I hope you have enjoyed my perspective of such an awesome event. They only get better so please go out, have fun, compete in the art of BBQ or just eat it, like me.
Live. Love. Meat.
aka MEAT ME