SPARKS, NV - Do you like St. Louis style? Or do you prefer the taste of Memphis BBQ? Right now at the rib cook-off you have a chance to try every type of rib you can imagine, from all across the US.
23 rib cookers from across the nation will be in town through Monday. They're ready to face off and prove their recipes are the best in the West.
They all look the same but their tastes are distinctly different.
"They come 2,600 to 3,000 miles to be here," said Randy Kennedy, spokesman for the Nugget.
From different corners of the nation, cookers have descended on Sparks. Each one bringing a different rub, a different sauce, and a different style.
"If I had two hours I could probably explain to you the different regions. The good thing about Memphis style is it is very sultry," said Melissa Cookston of Yazoo's BBQ.
Straight from the South, Yazoo's BBQ is not too vinegary and not too mustardy, just down home good cookin'. "You get a good base flavor but it's really sultry and sexy," said Cookston.
Yes. Ribs are sexy this week. Just ask lifelong cooker Alyson Lupinetti about her Jersey ribs inspired by Texas, Tennessee and North Carolina cooking.
"We just dry rub them to cook them and the only time we ever put sauce on them is on the grill," said Lupinetti.
Any cooker will tell you the secret to good ribs is in the rub, but what's in the rub is a closely held secret.
"The first layer of seasoning is something I can't share," said Bob Stately with Famous Dave's.
Sauce is the next most important thing. Kentucky BourbonQ prides itself on that.
"They do have bourbon in them, it's kinda our namesake, so we like it, our customers love it," said Jason Best with Kentucky BourbonQ.
You can't have barbecue without a trip to Texas. Every year of the Nugget rib cook-off Joey Stuphen has been there creating the perfect bled of sauce and seasoning.
"Get the right amount of each... Mmm," said Stuphen.