BLANCHESTER — Local pitmasters smoked the competition with their barbecuing skills last weekend.
Brisket-Bones & Brews BBQ with pitmaster Caleb Stringer out of Blanchester was named the grand champion and won $2,600 at the second annual Smokin’ in the Hills barbecue cookoff in Hillsboro, sponsored by Wilmington-based R+L Carriers.
Wilmington’s Dub Town Smokers was also strong, taking fifth place among 32 competitors.
Brisket-Bones is now qualified to participate in the American Royal World Series Barbecue Invitational in Kansas City, Kansas next year.
“This is like a dream come true,” said Caleb Stringer.
The Blanchester barbecuers have only competed in six other competitions in their three years in business. Before this, they mainly smoked for family and friends and for catering.
This was not their first time competing in Smokin’ in the Hills and placing first.
“It’s what we strive for. We still feel fortunate to pull it off when going up against the caliber of teams there,” said Jeff Stringer, Caleb’s uncle.
The Stringers want to compete in a few more Ohio competitions before going onto going up against the best around the country.
The teams competed in four categories — chicken, ribs, pork, and brisket — along with a Cabo Wabo Infusion Contest and a CaboRita contest.
Bricket-Bones placed third in chicken, ninth in ribs, 11th in pork, second in brisket, first in Cabo Infused contest, and second in CaboRita.
Dub Town Smokers placed fourth in chicken, seventh in ribs, sixth in pork, 15th in brisket, second in the Cabo Infused contest, and third in CaboRita.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574