HOME > Chowhound > Kosher >


Long Island Kosher BBQ Championship

Just saw this: http://likosherbbq.org/

Looks like they are holding a BBQ contest on Sunday, June 10th, 2012.

Anyone planning on competing?


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I already contacted them and they said they have room for 25 teams with 16 confirmed coming. A lot different than other competitions but looks like a lot of fun. I wonder if their brisket judges are all grandmothers from Brooklyn?

    1. I don't know, June 10 is coming around rather quickly, and it has been years since I used a Webber for smoking. I would probably rather just make my BBQ there using my already kashered Southern Pride, for exhibition and not for the contest, and if people trusted me enough to eat by me, let them. It has been years since I've smoked with anything but logs.

      By the way, if everyone could daven for the health of my Rav, I'd appreciate it: Chaim Yisroel ben Chanah Tzirol. He's not doing well. Rav Yisroel Belsky.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ganeden

        I'd love to bring one of my pits also, but there'd be little fairness in that. One guy can't be pimping out a Green Egg with wood pellets being dropped by timer as he sleeps through the night while the next painstakingly stokes his flames through the tireless night. It's been a while since played with a kettle overnight as well, but I'd be happy to slum it:) As long as the meats they provide are choice or better and they make good on providing any kosher item requested, this will be a great little smoke-off.

      2. Looks like according to the rules you have to use kettle style grills that they provide. No outside equipment allowed.

        Also, cooking time seems to be restricted to a few hours on Thursday, and a few hours motzei Shabbos. I wonder if you could achieve results like pictured above with those limitations.

        Perhaps a water bowl between the grill and fuel in the kettle could allow you to maintain a consistent 200-250F? If so, would there be enough time to do brisket justice?

        They also provide all the meat. I wonder if they will get a brisket with the proper fat cap intact? Seems like those are hard to come by.

        BTW - the bbq in the pictures is making me hungry. Looks fantastic. I'm definitely planning on going (as a spectator) and seeing in person.

        7 Replies
        1. re: iambarry

          Teams are permitted to light up their grills starting about 10:30 motzei shabbos (Saturday night) and the judging of the brisket is 15 hours later at 1:30 Sunday afternoon. Size of brisket will be about 12 lbs so that should be plenty of time to give it all the cookin' and lovin' it will need.

          The briskets will come with fat caps and Thursday night is when the teams will select their briskets and ribs and will use those hours to trim and get their marinades and rubs assembled and applied. There really will be no "cooking" on Thursday unless some team wants to get something into the oven for a few hours.

          1. re: marvinlikosher

            I'm glad I misunderstood.

            Now for the really important question: Will spectators be able to sample the results, or will there only be enough for the judges?

            1. re: iambarry

              From the FAQ section on the website:

              Q: Can we eat the food that the other teams prepare?
              A: Unfortunately, due to Nassau County Department of Health rules and regulations, the competitors cannot share their food with the public.

                1. re: marvinlikosher

                  I think Marvin's right. It still sounds like fun, and I still plan on going as a spectator.

                  Perhaps when its over though, we should organize another contest where any unfair advantage is allowed as long as its kosher, and where the spectators get to taste the results.

                  1. re: iambarry

                    That would be very hard to do. Between kashrut rules and NYS requirements you would basically be looking at a competition of caterers and restaurants.

                    1. re: avitrek

                      Just to be clear: There WILL be food available for the public to purchase. "Pulled" BBQ Brisket sandwiches, Hot dogs, Knishes, Cole Slaw, Pretzels, Fruit, Desserts, and beverages.

        2. Can people eat at the Memphis one? Or is the same thing there? I guess I'm not that excited to go eat inferior BBQ while people a few feet away are eating awesome BBQ.

          1 Reply
          1. re: DeisCane

            Memphis (23 years) and Birmingham (3) years have the identical situation in which the local dept of health forbids the teams from selling their bbq to the public. Both of them offer cafe's where food is vended by the host organization. That said,,,,what happens there is that as visitors walk around 'schmoozing' with the teams and talking about rubs, marinades, and techniques, invariably the teams proudly offer up a taste to the visitors. They don't sell sandwiches or bowl fulls, when the mood hits them, they offer a taste. There is no money changing hands and it is a one-on-one encounter.

          2. I saw on fairways fb page that its gonna be at temple beth torah, isn't that the one that had the kashrut issues with morrell caterers? It was all over the news a week or two ago

            3 Replies
            1. re: shoelace

              Morrell is at Temple Israel in Lawrence and at a temple in Melville, not at this one in Westbury.

              1. re: susiejane

                Same name (Temple Beth Torah), different town. Not affiliated in any way. The Morrell one is in Melville/South Huntington; this one is in Westbury.

                1. re: craigcep

                  same name, different town, phew

                  thanks for responding :-)

            2. Kashrus Supervision has been announced:

              Under the strict rabbinical supervision of Mehadrin Kashrus – Rabbi Abraham Marmorstein, Kehal Minchas Chinuh, NYC.

              Rabbi Abraham Marmorstein started the Kosher La-Mehadrin hechsher in 1989. He has semicha from Beth Medrash Govoha (Lakewood) and is a member of the National Council of Synagogue Rabbis of Agudath Yisrael. Rabbi Marmorstein is author of Halachos of the Seder, Halachos of Purim, and Bartenura; co-author of Yad Yoledes.

              2 Replies
              1. re: marvinlikosher

                You may know him as the hashgacha provider for Fairway's bakery.

                1. re: marvinlikosher

                  Total Yiras Shamayim and a depth and breadth of knowledge and integrity which is tough to come by in this industry. The Star-K allows us to work with any number of the establishments he overseas from Fairway to Mike's Pizzeria.

                2. 6 days and counting. To the OP....I'm all in, stop by my booth "smokin for life".

                  I'll be giving out free pull smokehouse beef sliders to anyone who gets swabbed by the righteous people at Gift of Life and HELP4Ezra. With the Weather Channel promising us a perfect day, it's an event not to be missed.

                  Come CHOW with me!!!

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: gotcholent

                    Ari, I've already been swabbed and if i wasnt still gorging on the wedding leftovers I'd be there - bib on! Good luck!

                    Everyone you must check out the smoking for life booth - you will not be disappointed and you will not feel left out of the treif BBQ

                      1. re: berel

                        Got there when they opened at 11am and stayed about an hour , here's some pics of the booths I took. Next to last pic is Ari Aka "gotcholent" he can fill everyone in on the details of the championship


                      2. re: gotcholent

                        Our own ARI took first place in ribs and second place in brisket. He absolutely proved he knew his way around our Trinity: "Meat-Smoke-Fire". Congratulations gotcholent!

                      3. I am totally excited about this competition. Does anybody know how this event will relate to the ASBEE event in Tennessee? I really want to go to the one there but its at the wrong time of year for convenience. Also, what kind of family events will this thing have? I want to bring the family and I am wondering what sort of activities they have for kids.
                        I look forward to this event as I am a huge fan of BBQ...I'm actually smoking right now.
                        Good luck folks.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: NYCFoodster

                          trI am from Memphis and the ASBEE Barbecue contest is scheduled at that time because a Memphis summer is UNBEARABLE!

                          Also when they start almost 25 years ago they wanted to do it in May but the Memphis in May World BBQ competition protested and forced them to change the date

                          1. re: NYCFoodster

                            Click on the link above for info on family and other events

                          2. They just went up with the details for this year. June 9th. Looks like they are soliciting teams. Last year 17 this year 30?

                            22 Replies
                            1. re: jameslakes

                              This was a GREAT event last year both for those who came to watch as well as those of us that competed. With equal access to the exact same equipment and foodstuffs there was a totally level playing field. Wouldn't miss this for anything... (I mean that as my sis-in-law is getting married that day and I will be going strait from turn-ins to Liberty Warehouse for the big day smelling like bonfire)

                              1. re: gotcholent

                                I see that our friend and CH Kosher Board 'member' got really screwed over by the judges this year because they thought his team name was 'irreverent'

                                See the link to article published on line at Vosizneais:

                                I think the judge should be permanently banned from competitions and publicly shunned. I am also angry with the pressure exerted by the Star K and will personally avoid supporting that organization.

                                The US is not a theocracy and Ari should not be made to suffer fools who insist that all things be their way, or else. There was no question about the kashrut and supervision, the Hareidim are overstepping their bounds.

                                1. re: bagelman01

                                  eh- i dunno

                                  oone of the three topics they were judged on was team name, and some of the judges werent in to his name- i think they have the right to that opinion- whether or not i agree with it (and i dont)

                                  that minus in one category is indeed what cost him the championship

                                  but i think its just as subjective as things like taste and flavor

                                  1. re: shoelace

                                    Wanna meet for dinner at Jezebel?

                                    Seriously, guys, when the hip meets the frum it gets silly.

                                    1. re: AdinaA

                                      It's not just about silly. It turns young people off. The competition was a way to introduce non-observant Jewish under 30s to a kosher alternative to trief bbq.

                                      My 24 yo attended with a group of friends (and yes they were patrons of Jezebel). Daughter goit to show friends that it was possible fror the group to go out, have BBQ (which is trendy) and my daughter could eat.

                                      This overbearing political nonsense turns the young adults off.
                                      It certainly offended me.

                                      No knowedgeable Jew would confuse HaKadosh BBQ for G-d's name.

                                      It's one thing to build a fence around the tirah, but another to build one around sanity.

                                      BTW>>>>Daughter said Ari's was the Best BBQ at the event, even better than what comes out of my smoker.

                                      1. re: bagelman01

                                        curious, was your daughter a judge? bc the participating booths werent allowed to give their own food out, how did she know his food was the best?

                                        1. re: shoelace

                                          "Allowed" or not, booths were giving tastes out. I didn't get to try anything from his booth, but I got tastes of a few other teams' stuff. See marvinlikosher's comment from Feb 2012 above.

                                          1. re: queenscook

                                            hmm, now im disappointed i missed this year :-(

                                            1. re: shoelace

                                              I made the 1hr+ schlep out there and by the time I got there, nothing was left. You didn't miss much.

                                          2. re: shoelace

                                            no, but she got tastes at a number of booths

                                      2. re: shoelace

                                        We had a local team from here in Trumbull that competed. The name judging was for a specific prize. The judge who didn't like the team name could have given no points for name, but it had nothing to do with the food judging.

                                        1. re: bagelman01

                                          from their judging explanation-

                                          Grand Champion

                                          In order to be named Grand Champion, a team must compete in all six categories. The total points for all six categories (both food and non-food) will be used to determine the Grand Champion. Food categories will comprise 80% of the total score, while non-food items will comprise 20% of the total score.

                                          my understanding was that he was knocked out of grand champion bc of the name scoring issue

                                          are you saying that his not winning on the other categories was bc the judge slanted based on the name?

                                          1. re: shoelace

                                            It wouldn't amtter if the judge gave him a zero on the name section towards overall champion, bjut my understanding from a conversation with a participant who questioned the judge (yes, it is hearsay) was the the judge also lowered his grades on the food because of the name.

                                            1. re: bagelman01

                                              Per the TOS of this blog, as a representative of the LI Kosher BBQ Championship, I am posting the correct judging facts:

                                              1) The food judging is double blind so there is no ability for anyone to identify which team provided which food to the judges.
                                              2) The "culture" (non-food) judges (name and booth design) are independent of the food judges (they do not get to taste or have any input or access into the food portion of the results).
                                              3) Judging for grand champion is determined utilizing the same scoring weights for food and non-food categories as used in the other Kosher BBQ Championship circuit events.

                                      3. re: bagelman01

                                        I am disgusted by the judge and the pressure put on the star k. Ari is such a hardworking mensch. He has brought kosher food to a different level and the quality is top notch. Other kosher cateters could learn a thing or two from him. He is handling this with a lot more grace then I would!

                                        1. re: pitagirl

                                          "He is handling this with a lot more grace then I would!"


                                          1. re: shoelace

                                            Unfortunately, Ari doesn't have a choice. If he speaks up, he will lose the Star K certification (one not subject to all the NY area politics and factionalism) which is universally (US) accepted.

                                            He must hold his tongue, but I'd love to put in an order for a few smoked tongues.......................

                                            Those of us not in the business have an obligation to speak up and expose this capricious treatment and manipulation by the judge and Star-K

                                            1. re: bagelman01

                                              the ridiculous thing, is that so many kosher food businesses have had names that are actually trying to tick off the super frum, or are just not Jewish themed at all, why is anyone making balagan out of a name thats so obviously not meant to be offensive. the opposite in fact.

                                              1. re: Moishefrompardes

                                                I said the same thing. Posted this to him publicly but directly:

                                                I think everyone here who has put the pressure on you to change the name is out of line. The name is not irreverence at all. It's a great play on a wonderful phrase, and if anything, heightens that phrase more than ever before. Those "mamish" good people who were so offended by the name to "score you accordingly" are not good people, because they are not rewarding effort but instead are "judging the book by its cover." I understand the position you are in, but somehow I don't think Hashem is offended. Your success speaks for itself -- somehow I think Hashem has always been watching over you and you are reaping the successes of your labor AND the creative name. But hey, that's just me...

                                              2. re: bagelman01

                                                Thanks Bagelman, but I've never been one to hold my tongue, smoked or not, and I don't imagine that starting now. The Voizisnois article was taken out of context and has many factual fallacies. The original article has now printed my reply to their questions in full... for the whole story check out http://yeahthatskosher.com/2013/06/an... For the record the STAR-K never did anything but share with me the many complaints they received as they received them. The choice to change the name and as such not alienate so many of my holy brothers and sisters is the right decision and one that I stand by....no matter how brilliant the pun! And I'm proud as hell of my team for the 1st in Brisket and 2nd in both ribs and chicken that we brought home competing against some of the countries top kosher pit crews. Kosher BBQ is ALIVE and well!!!

                                                1. re: gotcholent

                                                  I just read your response and you show what a mensch you are. There is no question about the quality of your food.

                                                  Unfortunately, you can't please every one all the time, someone perceived their ox was gored. Personally, I'd like to see you smoke that ox in that huge Texas smoker.

                                                  On the home front, I finally got a building permit to build my brick smokehouse in the yard. Found a zoning exception that only allows leaves to be burned in a brick/block structure with a chimney. So, after spring and fall lawn cleanup I'll burn a load of leaves, the rest of the time that smoke coming out the chimney will smell from meat and poultry............

                                                  BTW, daughter said the taste she snagged at your booth was great!