Southern Hospitality

OVS always likes to find new places and new towns to cook.  Enter Ayden, NC, and the inaugural Kings of Que competition.  We normally don’t hit the NC trail until later in the year, so the group was relishing this trip and the opportunity to see their BBQ peeps in North Carolina.

Luke drove down Thursday and spent the night at Redneck Scientific HQ, approximately 45 minutes  an hour and a half from Ayden. The chief execs of Redneck Scientific, the two girls, we’re certainly ready for Luke.

From El Presidente to the Princess.  Such is life.

(Pitmaster note:  If ever in the Raleigh area, please hit up Deep River Brewing in Clayton, NC.  Some tremendous brews there and great people.  Check them out at

On to Ayden bright and early.  Straight to our spot and setup began.   Usually this is where a first-time competition will drop the ball a bit in terms of logistics for the cook teams.

Not so in Ayden.  Everything was as it should be, with nice big spots, great power and water, and the most helpful people that you can find.  There wasn’t a half hour that went by where some representative from the town didn’t come by and ask us if we needed something.  A great job to all of the volunteers and everyone from the town of Ayden.

We’d have the pleasure again of cooking next to Redneck Scientific, which would automatically lead to a fun time with Jerry and Roxanne.  Roxanne would arrive on Friday afternoon…and two doors would open on the truck.

The Guv had returned.  The Mayor of G lot.   Read here if you are unfamiliar.

Oh, the great joy!  The group would have some cocktails and dinner together on Friday night, and then set to cooking on a rainy Friday night.  Kim and Leigh Anne would arrive late Friday night and the whole crew would be together again.

There were some slight changes to the cook, but everything went smoothly.  We headed to awards and hoped for the best.

A bit about the awards — Ayden raised the bar once more.  Wooden cutting boards for all 10 places in all four categories, with each category winner also getting a Dexter Cleaver, as well as cleavers for fifth through third overall.  RGC and GC would get two cleavers and a chopping box.  All handmade locally, and absolutely beautiful.

OVS was very fortunate to take some of that home — 3rd place chicken, 4th place ribs, and 1st place brisket would be good enough for Reserve Grand Champion, behind Grand Champion…Redneck Scientific.
The whole crew had a blast in Ayden and we can’t wait to go back next year.   A huge shout out to our NC BBQ family, Redneck Scientific, Smokin Skullies, Muttley Crew, Grillin Thyme, Fatheads, Fired Up, Recycled Smoke….gosh, so many good people down south.  A special shout to Billy Merrill from Holy Smokes BBQ for all that he has done for the comp…such a great experience.

And who can forget the Guv.  Brought the sunshine with him and made it an awesome weekend.