Hey folks, I asked our new friend Chad Dodge of Dodge’s BBQ to take a minute and write about his experiences with us at the Houston Hot Sauce Festival. Check out what he had to say and go follow his Twitter and Facebook accounts (linked above).
Social networking used to scare me a little. However, I did recently join twitter, and found out what a blessing it is. Just like most people, I spent the first few days following
people/companies/organizations who shared in the same interests as me. Two of those first ones, were Scott Roberts and Shane Draper. I was excited to find out through Scott, there was a hot sauce festival in Houston the following week. My oldest daughter and I have a lot in common (Daddy’s girl), and our love of spicy food is one. To quote her:
“We are so there, dad!” Another bond we share is BBQ. I’ve enjoyed smoking & grilling for years around the home, and she is definitely my number 1 fan. I find out the next day, that Drapers BBQ is competing in a 6-team rib cook off…at the same festival, and Shane tells me to swing by and say hello. I know, right?! Why am I so excited you ask? Well, BBQ is a passion…and those cooks who compete, have restaurants/food trucks, and cater, are who I look up to. The hardest part was not coming across as a complete tool.
Before I run through our Saturday there, I want to say thank you to all of the sponsors, who made it a fun and unforgettable day. The workers/volunteers were all helpful, the prices for everything were reasonable, and the wide variety of vendors was a plus. All for a good
cause too..the Snowdrop Foundation. Kudos, my friends.
Nothing against the hot sauce sampling, but we made a beeline for the DBQ logo, that I recognized from their website. I waited for Mike to finish explaining the ins and outs of their sauce and rubs to a patron, and then introduced myself. Both he and Shane were very
polite, offered up some samples, and welcomed us into their hospitality suite/tent. We accepted of course, and moved in for a front row seat to the action. I was introduced to Randy, a local cook who had helped DBQ with a pit for that weekend. I asked questions, and listened, as if there were a test at the end. Any nerves I had from being at a cook-off for the first time, were laid to rest quickly, by the “good ol’ boy” feel to the conversation. I didn’t want to overstay our welcome, plus we had to get to the other festivities, so we headed out to get our burn on. We stopped at the the cheesecake on a stick place, so Brianna could get something dipped in chocolate. Dessert first, does happen occasionally. We made the rounds through the vendors, stopping to try their products. A few stuck out for different reasons, like Big Red’s, Volcanic Peppers, Stupid Hot Sauce, and especially the fiery dressed folks from Zane & Zack’s. We then stopped off for an iced lemonade and a water to squelch the flames, and to get a festival shirt for her to sport. When we made it back to the DBQ tent, it was close to turn in time. The guys were scurrying about, putting the finishing touches on their rib entry. I offered a hand, and they let me help Randy wrap the ribs for the people’s choice samples. The entries were whisked away, and everyone took a deep breath, and popped a top. They had to twist my arm pretty hard, but I eventually sampled the ribs. It was nothing short of perfect, and I could see the “OMG, I can’t let dad know how good these are!” look in my daughter’s eyes. We chatted BBQ a little more, and snapped a couple of photos, then said our thank yous & goodbyes. We made the trek by the other competitors, to say hello & good luck, took a couple more
pics for Brianna to share with her friends, and we were off to tell our adventure to the family.
Being able to mix dad time with hobbies and good people, made those
few hours on a September Saturday, a WIN-WIN. Thanks!!!