For the fifth year in a row, Texas A&M University was one of the sponsors of the TMBBQ Fest 2015, and Texas Barbecue faculty and students were in attendance at the festival on Sunday, November 1, 2015 in Austin. The Texas A&M University team included Davey Griffin, Ray Riley, Jeff Savell, Jennifer Willis, Taylor Rowland, Julia Rauschuber, Marc Vogelsang, and John Chivvis. Jennifer, Taylor, Julia, and Marc are part of our Jazzy Juniors and Snazzy Seniors who have taken ANSC 117, Texas Barbecue as freshmen and who now help with the class as upperclassmen.
At the festivals we attend, we have a booth the has been called the “Barbecue Genius Counter,” which is modeled after the Apple Genius Counter where people can go to the stores and get great assistance from the Apple employees. We do not begin to believe we are so knowledgable about all things related to Texas Barbecue that we are in the “genius” category, but it gives us the opportunity to visit with several hundreds of people during an event and to answer questions they may have about barbecue. The major question we got at the TMBBQ Fest 2015 was simply this: “How do I get into Barbecue Summer Camp and Camp Brisket?” These camps, which are conducted in conjunction with Foodways Texas, are so popular that they sell out in a matter of seconds these days, so we just encouraged everyone to plan ahead and keep trying to get in.
We arrived early in the morning of the event to visit with pitmasters we knew and to meet those we did not know. It is a great time to talk to each of the folks in the Texas Barbecue business before the crowds show up to begin the afternoon of sampling such great food from these highly rated establishments.
One of the benefits of participating in the TMBBQ Fest 2015 is to sample great barbecue. As usual, the longest lines were found at Franklin Barbecue, and we were fortunate to be at the beginning of the line for Aaron’s great food.
Sometimes, we have the opportunity to talk about barbecue to noted folks. This year, we had the chance to visit with musician and fellow Aggie, Robert Earl Keen.
Another TMBBQ Fest has come and gone, and we always have a great time representing Texas A&M University at the event and spreading the word about the Texas Barbecue effort here with those from around the state. We look forward to next year’s event, meeting new folks, and renewing old acquaintances through our common love of Texas Barbecue.