2013 Alabama BBQ Sauce-Off

The Alabama Tourism Department is looking for Alabama’s tastiest BBQ sauces for our statewide BBQ Sauce-Off. A panel of judges will select the winning BBQ sauce by region and then the winners will compete at the finals in Birmingham on May 18.

All sauces must be from Alabama or bottled for an Alabama-based company. Sauces must be available for retail purchase and must include the printed word barbecue, barbeque, BBQ or a variation of the term as part of the title or description of the sauce on the bottle.

BBQ sauces must be labeled with product name, ingredients and all current FDA required nutritional information. BBQ sauces requiring refrigeration prior to opening cannot be accepted.

BBQ sauces will be entered into the Sauce-Off by and solely at the discretion of the Alabama Tourism Department. The Alabama Tourism Department is not liable for BBQ sauces not entered, or notification of a sauce not being received or considered.

Request for qualifying BBQ sauces to be entered may be made by BBQ sauce makers, the general public and the Alabama tourism industry.  In addition, the Alabama Tourism Department may automatically enter sauces without a prior request.

No purchase or entry fee required. Making a purchase will not increase a sauce’s odds of winning.

Let Us Know About Your Favorite BBQ Sauce
We would like to have your favorite Alabama BBQ Sauce in the Sauce-Off.

Look below to see the sauces that are already a part of the sauce-off.

Sauces Entered
BBQ Shack
Big Bob Gibson
Bob Sykes
Crusty Butts & Bones
Dale’s BBQ
Fat Boy’s
Full Moon
Golden Rule
Jim ‘N Nick’s
Johnny’s BBQ
Mike & Ed’s
Mike Elliott’s
Moon Hollow
Perfect Bite BBQ
Saban Sauce
Saucy Q
Slaphappy BBQ
Thomas Rib Shack

If you favorite Alabama BBQ Sauce is not listed, please let us know about the sauce and how we can obtain eight (8) bottles of it.

Notification of Sauce Form & Instructions
E-mail the following information to Brian Jones at brian.jones@tourism.alabama.gov by Friday April 19, 2013.

Notification of Sauce Form:

1. Name of Product:
2. Name of Company:
3. Company Address with Street and City:
4. Phone:
5. Your name:
6. Your email:
7. Where and how can the public purchase the BBQ sauce product:
8. Short description of sauce’s history or why you like the sauce:

Once we have received the notification of your favorite Alabama BBQ Sauce, we will start the process to determine if the sauce will be part of the Sauce-Off.   Part of the process includes eight (8) samples of the physical bottle of sauce in our procession for determination, so please be sure to include how the sauce can be purchased.

Samples of Sauce
The Alabama Tourism Department may purchase the required 8 samples of products or they may be donated.

Donation of sauce does not increase the sauce’s chances of winning.

If you are shipping product to the Alabama Department of Tourism, the 8 (eight) bottles of BBQ sauce must arrive by Tuesday, April 23, 2013.

A shipment of BBQ sauce does not constitute entry into the Sauce-Off.

All bottles of BBQ sauce become the property of the Alabama Tourism Department and will not be returned.

Shipping address:

Brian Jones
Attention: BBQ Sauce-Off
Alabama Tourism Department
401 Adams Ave Suite 126
Montgomery, AL 36104


The deadline to notify the Alabama Tourism Department of sauces is Friday April 19, 2013.   In addition, the Alabama Tourism Department must also be in procession of 8 bottles of each BBQ sauce by Tuesday April 23, 2013 to allow determination of eligibility.

No last minute or walk-up entries allowed.

A panel appointed by the Alabama Tourism Department will use a single rating of 1-10 to score a sauce on appearance, taste and texture. The judging panel may soak or pour the sauce on whole or portions of white bread in the judging process.

In the event of a tie for first place, an additional “tie-breaker” round will be conducted between all first place sauces to yield a single first place.

Results of the winner will be announced at the conclusion of each competition and listed on the Alabama Tourism website.  The winner of each regional Sauce-Off will be entered into the finals in Birmingham on May 18th.

Judges used by Alabama Tourism for the contest have not received formal training. They are not compensated. Judges’ decisions are final.

Award Presentation
Representatives and supporters of each sauce being judged are encouraged to attend the Sauce-Offs to be recognized by peers and take advantage of any potential publicity. However, you do not need to be present to win.

Winners will receive bragging rights.  No cash awards given.

Rules and Conditions
BBQ sauces must be commercially available to the general public through wholesale, retail or direct market outlets in Alabama.  In addition, the BBQ sauce must, in the determination of Alabama Tourism Department, have a direct tie; to tourism in Alabama; or to a locally owned and operated restaurant in Alabama; or to a BBQ sauce maker born or living in Alabama.

The sauce bottle must include the printed word barbecue, barbeque, BBQ or a variation of the term as part of the title or description of the sauce.

BBQ sauces must be labeled with product name, ingredients and all current FDA required nutritional information. BBQ sauces requiring refrigeration prior to opening cannot be accepted.

Each BBQ sauce must first compete in at least one regional competition.  The Alabama Tourism Department reserves the right to assign BBQ sauces in one or more regional competitions by location of associated restaurant, BBQ maker, randomly or to any region under represented.

The Alabama Tourism Department reserves the right to have one or more categories of BBQ sauce.

Location, Dates and Times of Competition
Location, dates and times of the regional and final competition are to be announced via this website.

North Region – Saturday, May 11 at 10:00 a.m., Decatur’s Farmers Market

Central Region – Saturday, May 11 at 10:00 a.m., Tuscaloosa River Market.

South Region – Saturday, May 4 at 3:00 p.m., Southern Makers Festival at the Union Station Train Shed in downtown Montgomery.

Gulf Coast Region – Saturday, May 4 at 10:00 a.m., Market on the Square in Mobile.

Final – Saturday, May 18 at 10:30 a.m., Pepper Place Saturday Market in Birmingham.


The Alabama Tourism Department reserves the right, in its sole discretion to cancel, terminate or suspend the Alabama BBQ Sauce-Off for any reason, including if: (a) viruses, bugs, unauthorized human intervention, fraud, technical failure or other causes which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the sauce-off; or (b) earthquake, flood, fire, storm or other natural disaster, act of God, labor controversy or threat thereof, civil disturbance or commotion, terrorism, disruption of the public markets, war or armed conflict (whether or not officially declared). In such event, the sauce-off will be determined by the Sponsor, using the judging criteria above from all eligible entries received up to the time of such cancellation, termination or suspension. Disputes Except where prohibited by law, all disputes concerning this promotion will be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws, rules and regulations of the state of Alabama without regard to its choice of laws or conflict of laws provisions.

Sponsor Alabama Tourism Department, 401 Adams Avenue, Suite 126, P.O. Box 4927, Montgomery, AL 36103-4927