WINNERS ARE GRINNERS: Double Barrel BBQ's Neil Dransfield (left) Adrian Blomfield (right).
WINNERS ARE GRINNERS: Double Barrel BBQ's Neil Dransfield (left) Adrian Blomfield (right).

Barbie champs add flavour to smoke-off challenge

BRISBANE mates Neil Dransfield and Adrian Blomfield entered their first barbecue cooking competition because it was cheaper to attend the event as a contestant than to pay the general admission fee.

As the day of that first competition at Port Macquarie drew near, they decided to start thinking about what they would cook and do some preparation.

That preparation certainly paid off as the pair walked away from the Australian Barbecue Wars, the biggest barbecue cooking competition in Australia, with first prize and truly hooked on the craze that has taken America by storm and spread rapidly throughout Australia.

Neil, 58, from Mansfield and Adrian, 55, from Springfield, known among barbecue cooks by their team name Double Barrel BBQ, now compete in up to 12 barbecue cooking competitions a year, travelling far and wide across the country as well as overseas.

"We had heard about it (the barbecue cook-off craze) and we saw a video of it on YouTube featuring one of the founders of the Australian Barbecue Alliance,” Mr Dransfield said.

"We thought it looked like a lot of fun, so we went to the competition in Port Macquarie, which is the biggest one run outside of America.

"It got a little harder after that first win. And we aren't competing in as many events this year, maybe just six or seven because it does involve a lot of travel.”

Double Barrel BBQ has managed to rack up an impressive number of wins in the five years they have been competing, and they plan to give the competition a good run for its money when they take part in the cook-off at the Kingaroy BaconFest from August 23-25.

Mr Dransfield said pork ribs were his favourite cut of pork to barbecue and he hoped that would be a category during the BaconFest event.

More than 30 competitors have already signed up for the SunPork Smoke-Off barbecue competition at BaconFest.

Cooking starts at 5pm on August 24 and goes through the night non-stop with blind tastings by judges who will be rating each dish on appearance, texture and flavour.

All things bacon will be celebrated at the second annual BaconFest in Kingaroy from August 23-25.

While the festival celebrates everything porcine, it also supports local producers and raises funds for drought-affected farmers.

The festival kicks off with a Wine and Swine cocktail event on Friday evening, followed the next morning by a cycling and running event, Rasher's Rush.

There will be bacon-eating competitions, a Miss BaconFest pin-up pageant, a two-day bacon-themed food market and cooking demonstrations by celebrity chef Adrian Richardson, host of popular television cooking show Secret Meat Business.

Info: kingaroybaconfest

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