Chow Town pitmasters are a creative bunch. Jay “The Snail” Vantuyl, for example, has invented so many barbecue gadgets, tools and unique cookers that if patented and marketed would bring him a handsome profit.
The barbecue seasonings arena is awash with resourceful entrepreneurs hoping to carve a niche in the market. Since seasoning combination possibilities are infinite, there is always room for another breakout sauce, baste or rub.
Dr. Rich Davis’ success at creating national best-selling KC Masterpiece Barbecue Sauce is legendary. I call it the sauce that launched a million dreams. Million is an understatement. I can think of only two other individuals, however, who have come close to Dr. Davis’ barbecue sauce success: Dave “Sweet Baby Ray’s” Raymond and Dave “Famous Dave’s” Anderson.
Fortunately for the barbecue consumer, Chow Town’s entrepreneurial spirit is strong, persistent and innovative. Scores of local sauces and rubs are available for purchase—Cowtown, Night of the Living Bar-B-Q, Plowboys, Jack Stack, KC Baron of Barbecue, Joe’s Kansas City, LC’s, Rosedale, Earl Quick’s, Danny Edwards, Johnny’s, Rufus Teague, Slabs, Bilardo Brothers, Daniel’s, Blues Brothers, Flower of the Flames, Jon Russell’s, Meat Mitch, Firebug, Mr. Doggity’s, Zarda’s, Gates, Arthur Bryant’s and Eat Barbecue to name a few. Many who make sauce also make one or more rubs. A few, like Guy Simpson and Ed Roith, market a rub only—KC Rib Doctor and Happy Holla, respectively.
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Two new local barbecue sauce and rub entrepreneurs have caught my attention recently: Rabbi Mendel Segal and Billy Rodgers.
In a town that is globally famous for non-kosher barbecue, Rabbi Segal founded the first Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) sanctioned kosher barbecue contest on the planet. His new kosher RaBBi-Q Kansas City BBQ Sauce and Rub will be available nationwide by early December and locally at Hen House, the Kansas City BBQ Store and other places. I have cooked with both products and am confident they will meet with enormous success.
Wings prepared with Billy Rodger’s Big Billy’s Wing Kit will hit your palate with the wow-factor. The kit consists of an easy to use brine mix, a wing/poultry rub, and a wing sauce. The wings I brined, rubbed, grilled and sauced with Billy’s product and instructions were vigorously devoured by family, friends and neighbors. Billy aims to have his wing kit packaged and in full production in time for the 2015 tailgate season. And by the way, Billy was Grand Champion at this year’s 3rd Annual Kansas City Vaad KCBS sanctioned Kosher BBQ Festival Contest.
Kudos to Rabbi Segal, Big Billy and all other Chow Town barbecue entrepreneurs.