Ten bucks and then you get to eat all the free ribs you want? Sounds too good to be true. And it is, busting open the word-of-mouth myth that, last Saturday, lured me down to Homestead Air Reserve for Miami-Dade Parks’ annual Ribfest.
More accurately, the cover charge for this gluten gala is $10, unless you’re a small child, in which case you get in for free and also means that, mostly likely, you won’t be reading this blog, making it safe for me to say: Fuck you, kids! Okay, no, not really. I didn’t really mean that. I love the children. Not in a icky Michael Jackson way, but in a Whitney Houston way. I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and they’ll learn how to write incredibly long asides which vaguely mask the fact that someone was jealous that they couldn’t use the bounce houses and those damn kids could.
But in order to indulge in all the festival’s meaty-goodness, you had to fork out extra money. Standard prices were about $7 for chicken, pulled pork, and brisket sandwiches, $12 for half racks of ribs, and $20 for full racks. Slap on an extra 5 bucks for Miller Lite, the event’s sponsor, and you’ve got yourself quite a dilemma -- which ribs, out of the dozen or so vendors do I choose to eat if most of my cash is gone?
I based my choices solely on which vendors had the funniest names, which coincidentally, won my personal third place prize for the three most entertaining things I observed at Ribfest 2008:
The names of the competing ribbers included:
Aussom Aussie Australian Barbeque: Who made my most beloved item of the night -- a deliciously fatty and smoky brisket sandwich smothered in their 2008-winning best sauce.
Porky-N-Beans: Winner of best ribs
Pig In Pig Out: Winner of best pork
Big Boned BBQ: Khloe Kardashian’s rib place of choice
Skin & Bones: Susan Lucci’s BBQ joint-o-choice (and winner of best chicken)
Blazin' Broncos: Pot-headed horses’ pit-pick, and winner for best brisket.
Desperado’s “Lick my Ribs” BBQ: My own champ for best name prompting me to buy a $15 half rack meal with beans, slaw, cornbread, and three sauces. Desperado’s also won for best sauce, one of which was so hot that I actually started to cry and I’m the kind of person who eats jalapenos straight from the jar.
Toss up between listening to the cover band Classic Rock All-Stars as they desperately attempted to coax a response out of a ravenous pork-obsessed crowd : “Hey South Florida! We’re originally from Detroit, anyone here from Detroit? Anyone? Someone? You? No? Oh, sorry.”
And the guy from Porky-N-Beans who kept on trying to sneak into all of my shots.
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There you go, dude, congrats.
This crotch who so eloquently stated which vendors were his favorite.