The World Barbecue Association (WBQA)’s three-day family friendly festival will see 100 Fire Chef BBQ teams from 30 Countries Worldwide, including 10 Irish Teams, USA, Chile, Europe and an all-girl team from Sweden, compete for the prestigious WBQA World BBQ Champion 2017 title. 40,000 revelers and barbecuing aficionados are expected to attend and witness the variety, drama, fun and skill involved in transforming a passion for flame and slow cooking into a sport, teamed with an overall prize value of €15,000.
Limerick-native Patrick O’Sullivan, President of the WBQA, has built a three-day family festival around the Championships. The People’s Park in Pery Square will be transformed into a World BBQ Festival filled with Artisan Food & Craft Stalls, Live Music, Art Corners, Kids Entertainment, Chill out Areas, Craft Beer, Gin and Whiskey Bars and loads of melt in the mouth BBQ! The WBQA ethos is Fire, Fun, Food & Friendship. It may be BBQ but it’s Vegetarian and Eco Friendly too.
John Relihan, the Greatest Fire Chef ever, will be doing BBQ Demonstrations throughout the weekend. Learn five ways to barbecue fish with a Fish Masterclass by BBQ Ben. There will also be Butchery demos from John Stone Beef and Wild Atlantic Foods and experts flying in to give La Plancha demos (What’s La Plancha? Come and find out)
Some of the greatest fire chefs in the world along with talented backyard enthusiasts will be competing to be crowned WBQA World BBQ Champions 2017 and must participate in five mandatory BBQ categories over the weekend; beef brisket, pork shoulder, pork ribs, chicken and fish. Teams also have the option to compete for three additional categories; vegetarian, dessert and chef’s choice which requires chefs to cook a specialty BBQ dish from their homeland.
This international event is estimated to be worth at least one million euro to the local economy and is supported by Fáilte Ireland and Limerick City and County Council.
Commenting at the launch Miriam Kennedy, Head of Fáilte Ireland's Business Tourism and Events Division said:
"Fáilte Ireland is delighted to support the upcoming WBQA World BBQ Association Championships coming to Limerick next month. With 650 competitors and 100 teams from over 30 countries registered already, we value this event at over €1m to the local economy in Limerick. International events such as these which deliver high numbers of tourism bednights, in this case 2,600 bednights, in October which is traditionally shoulder season, are of huge economic value to Ireland and a very visible high impact to the local community.
We look forward to welcoming the delegates to Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way and we wish the World BBQAssociation every success for the event".
Fáilte Ireland food champion John Relihan, is an international chef and well known in Ireland for his work with Holy Smoke Cork—a restaurant that is known for cooking with smoke and fire. John is also the World BBQ Association Ambassador for the event, and honed his BBQ skills when he worked as head chef in Barbecoa restaurant London. John has worked with severely international chefs all over the world including Jamie Oliver, Chris Cosentino San Francisco and Adam Perry Lang.
Speaking in advance of the festival John said
“It's a huge honour for me to be the Ambassador for the World BBQ Association for this event, it’s a wonderful opportunity for Ireland to showcase its produce and people and it also allows us to share our traditional dishes cooked through the element of fire. Cooking over fire and with fire is a very sociable experience and brings people together and connects us in a wonderful way through food.”
Patrick O'Sullivan, President of the World BBQ Association has pledged that this year’s festival will surpass expectations and live up to the WBQA ethos of Fire, Food, Friendship & Fun,
“What makes us different is that we celebrate the culinary and cultural differences of every country and promote each of their unique styles of BBQ cooking and presentation. We promote BBQ cooking using traditional methods with wood, charcoal etc. We promote friendship throughout the worlds ‘countries through the fabulous sport of BBQ.
The first World BBQ Championships took place in Ireland over 28 years ago, and while we’ve travelled the world celebrating food, culture and friendship, we can’t wait to have Limerick host the 2017 World BBQ Championships!
We feel Limerick has a lot to offer, given its success with festivals like Riverfest, Pigtown, Culture & Chips and the new European Food Truck festival, it’s a vibrant city with great hotels, pubs, restaurants and historic landmarks like King John’s Castle & Thomand Park. Food, Fashion, Rugby,
The park will be open to the public on Friday 13th from 4pm – 10pm and on Saturday and Sunday 11am – 10pm. Friday tickets are extremely reasonably priced at €5, and Saturday and Sunday tickets are available at €10 per person per day, with children under 18 accompanied by a parent FREE. There is also the option to buy a weekend ticket (Friday to Sunday) for only €15.
To find out more about the WBQA World BBQ Championships visit www.world-bbq.com , or keep up to date with new additions to the weekend line-up on Facebook/WorldBarbecueAssociation. Book your ticket now on https://worldbbqchampionships.eventbrite.co.uk