Red Deer brothers Dylan Cave and Chris Becker are taking their barbecue skills to the biggest stage, the World Series of Barbecue in Kansas City.
By day, Cave is the owner and pit boss of Red Boar Smokery, 4916 50th St. Last year, he and Becker started barbecue competitions. Last year, they won 13 awards, including a grand championship at the Those were the Days BBQ showdown in North Battleford, Sask. in August 2016.
That victory led to an invitation to Cave and Becker by the American Royal Association’s World Series of Barbecue, held on the Labour Day weekend in Kansas City, Mo. The invitation arrived in May.
“I was kind of giggly,” said Cave. “At the end of the day it’s another competition, but to be invited with some of the best in the world is special.”
Cave said he has an affinity for Kansas City-style barbecue.
“It’s sticky and sweet and that’s my go to,” he said. “You want that first bite to be sweet and then you want a little bit in the back of your mouth to pick up on the spice.”
They’ve signed up to compete in pork, pork ribs, chicken and beef brisket categories. Their finished products will be judged by Certified Barbecue Judges, trained by the Kansas City Barbecue Society.
But it won’t be easy. Because of a requirement to only cook using charcoal or wood, it takes a lot of care and attention to prepare the barbecue.
“Those days are tough, they’re long days, it’s a lot of work,” said Cave. “For this one we’re going to be up for almost three days straight watching the fires.
“Preparing for these, you have to practice. We’re lucky to the restaurant where we can practice and sell it.”
A special fundraising event will be held on Aug. 18 at Bo’s Bar and Grill, 2310 50th Ave. There will be silent auction items and other donation opportunities. Tickets cost $15 and can be purchased at Bo’s Bar and Grill or at Red Boar Smokery.
Among the items in the silent auction is a package from Prairie Smoke and Spice that includes sauces, rubs and a ticket to one of their barbecue classes.
“One of the reasons I think we’ve been so successful and won the awards we have, is before our first season we took that pit master class,” said Cave.
They are hoping to raise $10,000, which Cave said would get them there and set them up well to compete.
They are also looking for more silent auction items for the Aug. 18 event. Anyone willing to donate an item should email RedBoar@shaw.ca or firstname.lastname@example.org.
They also have a GoFundMe campaign online with tiered rewards for donations. The GoFundMe has a goal of $5,000.