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Smithfield Rib Super Series: Plant City Pig Jam

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December 3, 2013

The Smithfield® Rib Super Series knows the thrill of the competition that lies behind the quest for the best rack of ribs. It’s one of those competitions that recycles itself every time a new opportunity is presented, and one that never gets old.  This season, 13 KCBS sanctioned events played host to the points-chase Rib Super Series, shelling out extra cash and notoriety for top placing teams in the rib category. At the final showdown of the season, which took place in Plant City, Fla. at the Plant City Pig Jam, it was Sho Gud Barbeque who took home the first place prize.

Sho Gud Barbeque, led by pitmaster Jay Bickel, has been competing in the pro circuit for roughly three years now, averaging about 10-15 competitions per year. This was the first event they entered for the Rib Super Series, and in fact, the team didn’t sign up for the ancillary program until the Thursday before. Beginner’s luck? Maybe. But even more likely, Sho Gud Barbeque is just that good.

Perfecting the rib recipe is no easy task, and knowing when “done” is actually done can be one of the trickier steps.

“It’s all about feel for us. We call it the toothpick test, when you can stick a toothpick against the meat, and using your index finger to push in the tooth pick, and it goes in like butter, with no resistance, it’s done,” said Bickel. “That’s kind of your rule of thumb. That’s what the judges want; that perfect bite through. Personally, I like them a little more done, but that doesn’t work here.” 

Still on cloud nine from their first place win, Bickel’s recently opened barbeque store – Pitmaster’s Depot – down in Florida will be holding a backyard to competition rib class on January 28, and is open to anyone interested in attending. 

Congratulations to Sho Gud Barbeque on their win! 

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