The West Alabama Ice House recently hosted the final round of the "Win Texas Land" promotion sponsored by Lone Star Beer. The premise is simple: Pass various tests which prove your true Texan-ness and win some Texas land. Three finalists participated: Corey Lossing of Ingleside, Laurence Dodd III of Leander and Paul Ortiz of San Antonio.
The competition included the following activities: a washers toss (similar to horseshoes), a cooler-filling contest (a race to pack a cooler with beer and ice), a barbecue challenge (a piece of Texas beef must be grilled to order), and a Texas trivia/geography challenge.
I was particularly interested in the barbecue challenge, as I was one of the judges.
Judging criteria included taste, presentation and grill marks. One-inch-thick bone-in rib eyes were provided to each contestant for grilling. The steaks were to be grilled medium rare. But it turns out that all the contestants were a bit too quick on the trigger -- they all pulled the steaks off the grill too early, so they all came out very rare.
I ended up voting for the steak with the most aggressive seasoning. After judging, the contestants went on to the trivia contest, and my fellow judge and I tossed the steaks back on the barbie and grilled them to a perfect medium rare. We shared the leftover steaks with the hungry audience.
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In the end, Corey Lossing was the winner, with a strong performance in the washer toss. He and his wife Vanessa won 1.9 acres of land in Independence, Texas (near Brenham).