Do it: Windy City Rib Classic | Bleader

Do it: Windy City Rib Classic

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Friend of the Food Chain Gary Wiviott is a well-known proponent of barbecue cooked low and slow, but now he's emerged as a bit of a sadist too. This Sunday the Barn & Company pit master, in collusion with Rub BBQ Company's Jared Leonard, is hosting the first Windy City Rib Classic, a barbecue competition that, ahem, pits amateur and professional alike—20 in all—in a judged rib, chicken, and sauce tourney. Competitors are only required to smoke ribs and chicken over coals or hardwood—no gas or electricity, and no steaming or boiling allowed—for grand prizes of $1,000 for ribs and $250 for chicken and sauce.

The hitch is that attendees don't get to sample the competitors' work, which could be torturous. But I'm sure the concentration of piggy-meat smoke is likely to mob Fullerton Beach Grill, which will be serving pulled pork, chicken, ribs, and beer from Leonard's Rub. Apart from that there's live music, cooking demos from Lee Ann Whippen of Chicago Q and Matt Jost and Larry Donahue of Weber Grill, and the opportunity to mingle and get in the heads of the entrants as they do their work. And it's free.

The smoke starts billowing at 10 AM at Theatre on the Lake, 2401 N. Lake Shore.

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