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Pellet Envy, the envy of the Great Lenexa BBQ battle
Jul 01, 2011

Pellet Envy has added another grand championship to their belt after topping all 195 teams competing at this year’s Great Lenexa BBQ Battle in Lenexa, Kan.

They were also named the top team cooking with Kingsford, earning them points in the Kingsford Points Chase and a check for $500.

In addition, the team took home top honors in their favorite, yet arguably most difficult category, brisket. And, they finished third overall in ribs.

For Rod and Sherri Gray of Pellet Envy, barbeque is more than a weekend hobby, it’s a lifestyle they have embraced whole hog. Their love of the sport of barbeque is obvious, as is their dedication to sharing their knowledge and expertise on America’s cuisine.

The name Pellet Envy is, on the surface, a play on a term and concept developed and made popular by Sigmund Freud. It was also crafted as a jab to teams who have to stay up all night tending the fires while pellet cookers got to sleep. Now, as Rod and Sheri have begun using wood and charcoal, they’ve realized the joke is on them.

Like many American families, grilling and ‘queing was a long-time family affair in the Gray household. But Rod’s first low and slow experience came in college, when his then roommate offered his girlfriend (and now wife and teammate) a sample of the brisket he’d spent the better part of the day slaving over.

“That brisket was the worst thing I ever intentionally put in my mouth,” Rod said. “I swore I would never work that hard to achieve those end results. Ten years later I dove head first into cooking true low and slow barbeque.”

One could, and many do, argue that Rod and Sheri’s end results have been far more pallet pleasing that his roommate’s attempt at brisket.

In addition to competing, which they’ve been doing for 11 years, the Grays also teach classes on preparing competition barbeque. As one of the top teams on the KCBS circuit, Pellet Envy’s classes fill up fast as teams clamor to learn their secrets and techniques.

Rod offered a free tip to Grilling.com readers, “pat your meat dry with a paper towel before you put it on the grill. That way, you’ll get those great grill marks and the meat will release from the grill grates, which is a built in indicator that it’s time to turn it.”

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