Sunday, 30 October 2011

Ribs fest

Who would have thought that about 8 years ago I hated pork, I did not eat it and could not stand the sight or smell of it (except bacon of course). Thankfully things have changed. They changed while I was living in London when friends took me out to a BBQ restaurant called Bodean's, it was in Clapham and there speciality was ribs. I remember this experience very fondly, I ordered a rack of baby back ribs and they were soooo delicious, succulent and barbequie. From that time on I have never looked back! I now have a love affair with pork and when I heard of the ribs festivals over here in North America I just had to check one out.

There are several ribs festivals taking place all around North America during August and September  (summer time). The festivals are obviously all about Ribs and they have many vendors from all over North America. They compete to try and win the prize for the best ribs. There are also sub categories like the best sauce, the best pig, the best pig rig etc etc. I went to the Burlington Ribs Festival, this was the 16th year running and they claim to be the biggest Ribs Festival in North America.

Off I went to the festival hungry for some juicy ribs. There were 18 different vendors from Florida to Ontario. Although ribs were the main part of the festival there were also rides, live music, activities for the kids, arts and crafts.

My first choice of ribs was from Sticky Fingers, Providence, Rhode Island. They won third place in the Judges Best Ribs Award. The readon I chose Sticky Fingers was because I liked the display and the fact that they were playing some country and western music, Yeee haaa !!  

The ribs were ok not the best I have had, there was a lot of meat on the rib and the sauce was nice. 
The second lot of ribs I ordered was from another Americano place, Gator BBQ, Florida. They were probably my favourite of the 3 that I tried. The sauce was delicious and they packed it on, which was great as you can never have enough sauce! It turned out that they actually won the best sauce award. 
Lastly, I tried the ribs from Boss Hoggs, London, Ontario. They were the defending champs and also Canadian, so I had to try them. They were pretty good, but I have to say the Gator ones were my favourite.
After eating to capacity we sat down and enjoyed some of the live music.

Overall the festival was a lot of fun. It was a great chance for me to indulge in delicious pork meat and to enjoy a North American cultural experience! I am hoping that I can find a ribs festival somewhere in Australia to indulge again. Does anyone know? And if so where? And if not perhaps I need to bring this tradition back to Australia!!!