SXSW BBQ Panel Recap

Texas A&M’s South by Southwest panels look to the future

Aggie offerings delve into the scientific issues behind human rights, health care…and BBQ

By Steve Kuhlmann,

Barbecue enthusiasts were treated to a more than 45-minute panel with the “brisketeers” — Texas A&M professor Jeff Savell, AgriLife Extension meat specialist Davey Griffin and Rosenthal Meat Center manager Ray Riley — and author and cook Jess Pryles, who shared with the audience some of the principles they look for in meat and how their interest has built a community over time.

During the lively discussion, the panel offered up everything from tips on meat evaluation to their personal approach to how they go about cooking barbecue outside of the classroom and competitions.

Attendees even had the opportunity to sample some brisket and sausage at the conclusion of the panel to help illustrate the methods taught in the Texas A&M Camp Brisket.

Excerpt via source The Eagle | Texas A&M’s South by Southwest panels look to the future

SXSW Panel Recap: The Community, Culture & Science of BBQ

Three experts discuss all things meat, wood, and Texas barbecue

By Veronica Meewes

Dr. Davey Griffin at the The Community, Culture & Science of BBQ panel (Photo by John Anderson)

“People have a love affair with the idea of Texas barbecue,” said Jess Pryles, local meat expert and author of the recently released cookbook Hardcore Carnivore, at a Tuesday panel she moderated on the community, culture, and science of barbecue.

“Whether it’s the history of it, the food itself, the old barbecue joints with smoke-filled walls and a grisly old pit master — that culture has resonated across the world and we start to see barbecue being popular in other states… and other countries too.”

As a testament to her opening statements, the panel filled up quickly with smoked meat enthusiasts of all ages from all over the world. Pryles interviewed “The Three Brisketeers”: Dr. Davey Griffin and Dr. Jeff Savell, both meat experts and professors at Texas A&M University’s Department of Animal Science, and Ray Riley of A&M’s Rosenthal Meat Science and Technology Center. Pryles met the trio while attending Texas A&M and Foodways Texas’ Barbecue Summer Camp, an intensive three day program where she is now a speaker.

In addition to freeform conversation on the varying cultures of barbecue (from competition ‘cue to pit masters to home cooks), the Brisketeers also demonstrated and discussed various cuts of beef and detailed the differences between mandatory meat inspection versus meat grading (such as “prime,” “choice,” and “select”) paid for by processing plants.

“The USDA inspection makes sure that it’s sound, it’s clean, it’s safe, and it’s wholesome, and that’s their stamp of approval,” said Riley. “The quality grades are used as a marketing tool, but they also tell us about palatability.” Prompted by questions from the curious audience, the presenters got into some of the more nuanced details of Texas barbecue, such as the importance of trimming fat off the brisket, monitoring the temperature of both the pit and fire, and then resting the meat before slicing it. During the Q&A, one out-of-towner inquired about what type of wood stands in best when post oak is unavailable.

While the presenters advised choosing a hardwood without a lot of sap, Griffin told a story that proves what grows together goes together, even in the world of barbecue: “What we’ve found with our students is that the wood you grew up with is the wood that you favor,” he said. “If you grew up in South Texas, they would favor the mesquite. Those from East Texas favor hickory and those from Central Texas would always pick the post oak.”

via source The Austin Chronicle | Texas A&M’s South by Southwest panels look to the future

Aggies introduce world to Texas BBQ at TAMUxSXSW

AUSTIN, Tex. (KBTX) – Texas barbecue is a tradition, and Aggies say, it’s one the rest of the world should know about.

That’s why Texas A&M University gave South by Southwest participants at taste of the good stuff in the Discover Lounge Tuesday.

“There’s a mystique about Texas barbecue,” said Jess Pryles, a famous BBQ chef and author of ‘Hardcore Carnivore: Cook Meat Like You Mean It.’ Pryles and Texas A&M meat science professors spoke in a panel on the topic as well.

“One of the things that meat science has done is help the grading system,” said Pryles. “So when we hear words like prime, and choice, and select, so you can know that when you buy a prime steak, you can expect a certain level of quality.”

“How that translates in the kitchen, even something as simple as what temperature you’re cooking your steaks to ensure that they’re medium rare, that’s meat science,” Pryles said.

Click here to watch video.

via source KBTX | Aggies introduce world to Texas BBQ at TAMUxSXSW


For more information regarding news from the Department of Animal Science, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Texas A&M University, please contact Maggie Tucker at or (979) 845-1542.

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