Local team wins Memphis in May Barbecue Competition from more than 250 teams

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - From more than 250 teams worldwide, only one group of barbecue cooks can call themselves the Memphis in May Champions, and this year the winners brought the title to the Rocket City. Barbecue cooks from around the world bring their fiercest competition to Memphis for the barbecue blowout.

"If we can come back and make Alabama look even better in barbecue, that's great," Champion Barbecue Chef Randy Cannon said.

Cannon said that the most important step in making the perfect barbecue is having a knowledgeable butcher, and Cannon finds that person here in Huntsville.

"If you don't have a good butcher, you're behind the 8 ball already," Cannon said. "The competition ribs that we use, we get them here at Star Market. Chad, he will trim them up and he will take the center portion of that slab."

Cannon said it takes paying attention to each slab of ribs' detail to win the competition, including the fat, their bone position and overall form. He also has a technique to perfect his cooking.

"For the competition we cooked about 30 slabs," Cannon said. "I've done enough ribs that I can push on it and hitting it at the right point of where I want it to be competitively."

Cannon also credits his talented team for bringing home the victory. As a side note, Memphis in May centers around the top three teams in each category: whole hog, whole shoulder and rib. Those nine teams go into a final round for overall judging.

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