A beautiful brisket, babied over two days by Richard Wade of the Big Top Supermarket in Eastpoint, and sliced and scored for competition-level presentation by Joel Norred of Apalachicola, earned third place, in that category, among entries by 29 teams, at Smokin' in the Pines BBQ Festival on Sept. 21-22.

The duo finished 14th overall. This was a big win for this team, that recently changed its name from Pogy Road Porkers, to Pogy Road Q, and its first walk in the award ceremony for this meat on the Florida BBQ Association circuit.

They recently finished one and two, as competitors at the fifth annual Pork-Off for the Pink Out on St. George Island, and 12th of 18 teams at Wild Adventures in Valdosta in August.

The grounds of the Forest Capital State Park in Perry were brimming with the sweet smells of Southern-style good eating, and the competitors were top-notch, such as the partnership called Pig-Chicka-Cow-Cow, who rolled in off of a win in the chicken category, at the American Royal Association in Kansas City.

Pogy Road Q's mentor, Sweet Smoke Q, took Grand Champion last weekend, and offers a barbecue school that Wade and Norred recently completed.

“I’m good at what I do,” said Wade, a grocery meat cutter by trade, before the event. “When we practice, we’re really, just playing. But, that means nothing at these events. We have to bring our A-game."

Wade said he began cooking because, "some of the barbecue sold in restaurants is so bad I can’t stand it."

The circuit continues through the fall. Wade and Norred are looking forward to rising in the ranks at events in Monticello on Nov. 2, and Milton on Nov. 9.