Athens, AL – Lawlers Hwy 72 store Athens did not win the state championship but they were chosen as the North Alabama regional winner by judges Bobby Shuttleworth of WAFF-48, Evan Carden of Decatur Life magazine and Melinda Dunn of the Decatur/Morgan Convention and Visitors Bureau. The Decatur/Morgan County Farmer’s Market was the host site for the regional contest.
“We are so proud of Lawlers and appreciate their participation in the BBQ sauce contest”, said Jeanette Jones, Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association Co-President. “We worked really hard getting the word out to our BBQ restaurants to enter the competition. There will be more contests during the Year of Alabama Food. We hope other restaurants participate in upcoming contest.”
BBQ sauce championship generates wide press coverage. Celebrity judges picked the sauce from Phil’s BBQ restaurant in Eufaula as the state “BBQ Sauce-Off.”
The Central Alabama regional winner was Costas from Birmingham. Phil’s BBQ from Eufaula was chosen as the Southern Alabama regional winner.
“The Alabama Tourism Department designed the BBQ Sauce-Off as a way of promoting the state’s barbecue restaurants and independent sauce producers,” said contest coordinator Brian Jones. “The regional contests got great coverage and our championship in Birmingham was covered by channel 48 in Huntsville, channel 6 in Birmingham, channel 12 in Montgomery and AL.com. It was also featured in USA TODAY, on public radio and was picked up by the Associated Press,” he said.
Thirty-four sauces were gathered from restaurants and grocery stores across the state for the BBQ Sauce-Off. Sauces in the contest included: Bailey’s, Baumhower’s, Berdeaux’s, BBQ Shack, Big Bob Gibson, Bishop’s, Bob Sykes, Bryant, Carlile’s, Costas, Crusty Butts & Bones, Dale’s BBQ, Demetri’s, Dreamland, Fat Boy’s, Full Moon, Golden Rule, Jim ‘N Nick’s, Johnny’s BBQ, Lawlers, Mike & Ed’s, Mike Elliott’s, Moon Hollow, Noodie’s, Ollie’s, Perfect Bite BBQ, Phil’s, Rob’s, Saban Sauce, Saw’s, Saucy Q, Slaphappy BBQ, Thomas Rib Shack and Viper. Learn more about Alabama food products, chefs, culinary destinations and events at Facebook.com/AlabamaFood and at www.yearofalabamafood.com.
The sign up process is now open for restaurants to become a part of Alabama Restaurant Week. The process is quick and easy. Any Alabama restaurant that qualifies (and most quality if they are not part of a national chain) only has to enter their basic information at this time. You have until July 15 to enter your exact fix-priced meal offering. Sign up at www.alabamarestaurantweek.com. See the ABOUT section for a summary of the rules of the promotion.
Alabama Restaurant Week is an August 16-August 25, 2013 promotion and is part of the Year of Alabama Food state tourism campaign. For more on Year of Alabama Food, contact Brian Jones Brian.firstname.lastname@example.org. For more on Alabama Restaurant Week, contact Grey Brennan email@example.com.
For information and assistance in entering your restaurant, call the Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association office at 256-232-5411 or email info@VisitAthensAL.com.
By: Jeanette Dunnavant Jones President, Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association