Beefing it with the Baltic BBQ Boyz

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Proud RyanSweets and I were lounging around, contemplating our first weekend at home in two months, when we were given an invitation we couldn’t refuse.

My high school / college / survived our twenties- friend Ryan Ositis was looking for crew members to serve on his BBQ team, the Baltic BBQ Boyz. A special event was demanding his entry, the first ever Kobe Beef America BBQ Cook-Off in Bend, Oregon, and he was in need of friends not afraid of getting their hands meaty.

Sure I typically eat vegetarian, and flirt with veganism- but only because of its MacGyver-like charm… this all in no way trumps the curiosity over Kobe Beef! Having recently been spotted in Japan, we wanted our own taste of this loch-ness-monster of meat.

What ensued was a fun weekend of motorcycle riding, catching up with friends, pregnant belly patting, and meat festing.

Pork Shot

Made 4 briskets, wet smoked overnight. Ryan camped out with the smokers and babysat them all night long. The brisket was *excellent* juicy, beautiful smoke ring… 30 lbs of huge beef ribs were cooked the morning of, to be handed out to the crowd. We also received a last minute gift of three boston butts which we dry rubbed, pulled and dressed with a paprika based vinegar sauce…. deee lish.

Even though Ryan has won the Grand Champion title at this year’s Kansas City Barbeque Society Cookoff in Chehalis, and thought the brisket came out excellent, he didn’t place very well at this event. The scores were a bit dubious, esp after we heard that the judges received no direction or instruction. For example, the winner’s scores under “taste” ranged (1-10) from 2 to 9. So pretty inconsistent scoring from what we glimpsed, which makes learning from these events more difficult.

…but, we had a blast! Ryan’s attitude kept our weekend great- winning is not the goal, and really keeps the fact that he is a first year amateur in perspective with everything. We turned down several catering offers and pondered a couple marriage propsals, so all in all I think we did well :)

Really fun, but exhausting event.
Giving meat to hungry enthusiastic people is always a pleasure.


posted September 21st, 2006 at 4:48 pm

I love your comments and your whole website but want to correct one small detail. With regard to your comment that the winners score for taste ranged between 2 and 9. As the director of the KOBE-Q I witnessed the instruction and supervision of the judges throughout the whole day. The winning team got the following scores from the six judges in the category of taste – three eights and three nines for a total of 51 which ended in a weighted score of 102. So the judges were very consistent with this winning team and with all the teams. They received instruction from the Executive Chef of Kobe Beef America (Chef Michael Scott) on what makes good texture, appearance and taste and Chef Michael closely monitored these six judges as each competitor\’s meat was turned in. We know we are not Kansas City trained but we were trained!! Again, thank you for attending and for your comments, it really was a fun event.

  • thanks for the clarification Marcene
- Marcene Merlot
posted October 5th, 2006 at 2:10 pm

Just curious about your friend’s BBQ team name – what’s the Baltic connection? I can see a Latvian flag on the photo above – did that belong to your friend, or were the organisers related to the Baltics/Baltic community in the US?

- Pille

Leave a comment