BBQ Pitmasters Grand Champion Won 'Cook'n on a Lang' for the First Time

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When the barbecue smoke cleared at 2013 Pitmaster Grand Championship at the Blue Ridge Barbecue Festival in Tryon, NC, the winner was Rod Gray of Pellet Envy out of Kansas City, KS. Challenged to cook a whole hog on a Lang BBQ Smoker cooker, Gray won the event when judges called for contestants to provide belly, shoulder and loin samples.

The Blue Ridge Barbecue and Music Festival in Tryon, N.C. was the scene of the 2013 BBQ Pitmasters Grand Championship with a first place prize of $50,000. The 2013 championship competition took place on June 14 and 15th. The season 5 show aired on Destination America on August 25. Reruns are available on Destination America, Netflix, iTunes and others.

When finalists David Bouska, Lynnae Oxley and Rod Gray geared up to face the judges to find out what they would be cooking, Judges Tuffy Stone, Myron Mixon and Melissa Cookston informed the competitors that they would be cooking a whole hog. Challenging enough, but then the contestants were told that because the hogs are so big, they were going to be provided with a smoker cooker from the 84" model Lang BBQ Smokers® lineup, a cooker only one of the contestants, Lynnae Oxley of Sugars Barbecue and Catering out of Portland, Or, typically used. David Bouska of Butcher BBQ out of Chandlee, OK, and Rod Gray from Pellet Envy out of Kansas City, KS were not happy with the news. They were unfamiliar with the Lang BBQ Smokers®, a stick burner with the reverse flow, offset fire box design. Oxley on the other hand felt differently "I've cooked on a Lang for years, I would trust no other."

For the two finalists who had never used a Lang BBQ Smokers® help was on the way. Ben Lang, the man himself, creator of the reverse flow offset smoker stick burner was on the scene to assist the contestants with the finer points of using the 84" Lang BBQ Smokers® model. "I'm here to help you, ask me anything." Lang assisted and when David Bouska was faced with getting his smoker cooker ready. He said to his assistant, "Leave the doors open, Ben Lang said 'leave em' open' and he's the man".

Adding to the contestant's difficulty was the next announcement from the judges. The BBQ chefs were not to know exactly which cuts of meat from the 5 categories they were given they would have to have to present to the judges. Would it be ham, belly, loin, jowl or shoulder? They would find out at the last second. That wasn't the only surprise these contestants received. They were informed halfway through the competition that they would have to cook a slab of ribs and present "just one bite" to the judges. The One Bite Challenge winner would determine the order the contestants would present their hog. Position is important as it is thought that the first presenter's food is the standard by which the rest are judged.

Lynnae Oxley from Sugars Barbecue and Catering out of Portland, OR won the One Bite Challenge, choosing her own team to present first, Rod Gray second and David Bouska last. At the very last second the judges announced the samples from the hog they would be judging. Choice morsels of belly, shoulder and loin were unceremoniously pulled from the cooked hog and placed before the judges. The 2013 BBQ Pitmaster Grand Champion winner was Rod Gray from Pellet Envy out of Kansas City, proving the Lang BBQ Smokers® was a big asset to the winner despite never having used one before.

About Lang BBQ Smokers® .

Located in Nahunta, GA, each cooker produced by Lang BBQ Smokers® is proudly custom made. Ben Lang, owner and creator of the reverse flow offset fire box, oversees each cooker that comes off the assembly line. The line includes models for backyard enthusiasts as well as professional chefs, restaurants and competitors.

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