The Report of the Competition from Zbilje
BBQ Open was the first KCBS competition in Slovenia and one of the most comfortable event for us Italians, being just a few miles from the eastern borders of our country. Two conditions that made our participation almost compulsory, although we were depleted, finding ourself to compete for the first time with only two members and that took us to find on the competition field so many national teams, with many recurring names and some very nice new entry.
The location, as abundantly announced in the premises, was really fantastic on the shores of a beautiful lake, close to a seaside resort and a restaurant and the Slovenian Barbecue Society has put in something of their self by completing the work with an organization of first order, kept in the smallest detail. The only regret is for the climatic conditions that with two days of uninterrupted rain did not enhance what was certainly one of the most characteristic competitions of the season.
From the sportive point of view we are moderately pleased with our participation at the BBQ Open and we take home two walks on Pork (3rd) and Brisket (5th) for a good eighth place overall. We can only do our great compliments to our friends Brig Boys, who are able to take home two Grand Champions in eight days, after last week at the IBC and the great Dragon BBQ who with this Reserve Grand Champion confirm their wonderful season.
Let’s close with the usual ranking of the five things we take home from Zbilje:
- Not even the time to set up the equipment and the competition starts in thrilling mode yet. In these two seasons this was the first competition I could not be present for work commitments. Having done many competitions in my previous competitive experience, in a team where I used the code of a Head Chef rarely present in person, I was very surprised when they informed me that since the birth of the I-TOY, the gaining of the team points is related to the presence of the captain except for demonstrable reasons. A few hours of limbo were followed during which the required derogation was requested and obtained. From what they told me later, it seems to be a pretty well-established practice to avoid the team’s double participation but my ignorance put my coronaries through the wringer: do not try this at home!
- Taking into account the commitments and the working times of everybody, it can not be said that the travels of our competitions are usually of a tourist nature. Usually except rare and nice exceptions, we eat something improvised at the Gas Station or in some hash house that is about to close, we close the night of friday by knocking down the doorbell of the hotel reception asking for the room key, sleep a few hours and Saturday we go to compete. As I said, however, this is the first time I miss in two years and my teammates thought well with Federico Dal Lago’s complicity, to play as funny by turning every meal into a banquet and sending me pcs as a form of slash. In the order they stopped at friday in a trattoria along the way to eat boiled meat (traditional italian dish), on the saturday morning pastry for breakfast, fish lunch at the restaurant and breakfast with chocolate crepes on sunday morning. At the next competition of course, we will get back to Rustichella (low quality italian sandwich typical of the highway’s gas station) cold inside but lava hot and dry out outside and to the deep frozen Peroni…. Bastards 😀 .
- The first and only time I’ve been to Slovenia was many years ago for a holiday in the winter of 2003 and I was very impressed by the intense and green natural scenery, the rigor and cleanliness of the streets and the towns, the simplicity of people. Seeing the pictures of the teams involved and hearing the description of my teammates’ landscape during the trip (I know, I was tormenting them through the phone) has made me revive what I had seen then. Slovenia is beautiful, guys. If you have the opportunity, go there because it’s really worth it.
- One of the things we liked most about BBQ Open is the organization. It is clear and obvious from the choice of location, that expectations were for a near summer weather, lived by having sunbath on the loungers in front of the lake and watching the placid swimming of swans. Instead, there were two days of deluge. But these are the cases when the organizer’s excellence emerges: they switched to Plan B and the competition field, initially on the lawn in front of the lake, was moved to the parking lot, prudently released as free from the cars. The teams avoided competing with their feet immersed in the mud and had at their disposal an open bar / brewery, rustic and cozy, where they could be restored. Sometimes simple things are what counts.
- As it had already happened in the competition at Bardonecchia, we can only find (happily) that we are a population who have a lot of defects and maybe more, but when we have to do aggregation we are very good at it. Also in this competition, like in all those where there was a large number of Italian teams, a Little Italy was born with the usual gathering and night-tasting of dishes of all kinds, a specialty in which the Weber Shop Modena and the Italian Style are actually the absolute standard bearers.
Now a month long break and then the tenth and last step of our season, in Hungary, at Tàllya for the Tàllya Master Series of BBQ.