Great article Donna, I can't wait for part II. Thanks for sharing this Scott. As the original poster of this thread, I want to be forthright and again give thanks to the many great judges we have in California. It is my opinion that the large variance in judging exists due to the vague nature of the KCBS definitions of the scores. Particularly, on the description of a 6 as being average. I have heard this described as Donna points out "BBQ you'd find in a restaurant." I have also heard average described as "all the BBQ you have had in your life." So which ground rule do you use? To me neither is a definitive observation of the word average. By describing average as " BBQ you'd find at a restaurant" then awarding a score to most competition BBQ fare is insulting. Restaurants cook hundreds of plates per day. It is almost impossible for them to have the focus and attention on that quantity that we have on just a small sampling for 6 bites. Restaurants are cooking for a meal, we are cooking for a bite or two. We are using the best rubs, and sauces available. Restaurants are using cost effective alternatives that are tested over time. Comp BBQ is using the best new profiles. If I receive a 6 or even a 7, I am insulted, there is no way a restaurant can put the time, patients and commitment I give to the few pieces I serve to the mass quantity they serve.
I really liked Donna's quandary when contemplating between a 7 and an 8, I agree always round up. As far as the table from heaven or hell. It happens. It's not so much a full table as much as just two judges who are off that day. One judges scores can be dropped, but a second judge and it's over.
KCBS needs to better define what the scores mean. I think the sport has grown to the point where judges scoring should use the decimal point. 7.5 or 7.8 and so on. Scores are so close.
Edited by Steve Wilson, 18 April 2014 - 01:39 PM.