Written by Amy Brittain | Washington Post
If there were a Miss Congeniality of the competitive barbecue circuit, Mama Mary would take the title.
Last year, she earned the Spirit of BBQ award at the Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle, an honor given to the cook who has the best attitude during the annual D.C. festival.
Early Saturday morning, Mama Mary was in the hunt to be named the top winner of the two-day affair. She fired up her $7,000 cast-iron barrel grill, a behemoth she affectionately calls “Bertha.”
“We aren’t even worried,” she said, patting Bertha’s top as the smoke billowed.
A block down Pennsylvania Avenue, the titans of the contest, including 75-year-old Johnny Trigg, occupied “Celebrity Row.” Over time, “Mr. Trigg” has learned to accept the ups and downs of these events.