George Robert Pulley farewell our good friend!
It was our first contest and we were very overwhelmed. I was surprised to see a team from near to my home town of Zuni Va. I found out he went to school with my father and uncles. I thought we were almost family. It was very encouraging to meet him and his wife. They came in second over all in that contest. Since then our past have crossed many times. He and his wife have always been the example of a great and humble competitor!
We had the great pleasure to compete in our home town and guess who was there: our good friends 3 P's cooking team. We were short one shoulder because of a mix up and guess who can to the rescue? George gave us one of his shoulder and loaned us a chair so we could get into the rib finals!
Georges last BBQ contest.
WINDSOR—Four-year-old Henry Pulley II stayed up until 1:30 a.m. Saturday. His father, Henry, pulled an all-nighter.
The elder Pulley was competing in the Hamtown Pork and Fork Fest at Isle of Wight Fairgrounds, where other professional competitors stayed up all night cooking for the next day’s judging. His son got to spend the night.
“We pitched a tent,” Henry Pulley said.
Henry Pulley and his parents, George and Linda Sue Pulley, as a part of the 3Ps Cooking Team of Windsor, competed against 15 of the nation’s top barbecue cooks sanctioned by the Memphis BBQ Network.
Competitors start with a whole pig, which is cooked throughout the night. The Pulleys use a combination of oak and hickory to cook their pig.
“You have to make sure the temperature stays at 200 to 220 and that (the fire) is vented,” Henry Pulley said.
George Pulley began competing in 1993 and has won 45 national titles while traveling throughout the country. His wife appreciated having a competition in their own backyard.
“I think it’s wonderful that we don’t have to travel to Memphis or Florida,” Linda Sue Pulley said.
The Pulleys did not make the finals.
Connie Caruso and her husband, Rich Militano, traveled from Yardville, N.J. For the money they spent to compete, Caruso joked they could’ve spent a week in Bermuda.
Preparing for a competition involves preparing the sauces and rubs, equipping the trailer for hauling the cooker and preparing the meat. It’s all worth it, Caruso said.
“We both like to cook and it’s something we can do together,” she said.
To make it even better, they took third place in the pork shoulder division
Terry Rhinier, special events coordinator for Smithfield and Isle of Wight Tourism Bureau, was pleased with the two-day event sponsored by her agency and Smithfield Foods.
“The contestants were happy, and we had some great bands there,” Rhinier said.
For a donation to the ASPCA, visitors could try the barbecue and choose their favorite.
“For the People’s Choice contest, people had mounds of food on their plates,” Rhinier said.
Country Boys from Suffolk won the award. The team plans to open a restaurant in Smithfield.