Tuffy Stone

BBQ ambassador

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Richmond, Virgina

Current residence

BBQ

Tuffy Stone is a classically trained French chef, television personality, and accomplished pitmaster. He’s also one of the most successful competitors on the professional barbecue circuit. Tuffy is the head cook on the team "Cool Smoke” and has earned Grand Champion titles in nearly every major barbecue competition on the circuit.

In 2013, Stone took home two World Champion titles while only cooking eight contests and followed up in 2014 with another World Championship title, winning the American Royal Open. That year, he also won 1st Runner-Up at the Houston Live Stock and Rodeo World Championship, and took 2nd place in ribs at Memphis in May. Tuffy has won contests all over the country, including back-to-back wins at the American Royal World Series of Barbecue, Grand Champion at the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational in 2013 and 2015 and 1st Place in Whole Shoulder at the 2010 Memphis in May World Championship. In 2015, Tuffy took home the top prize in competition barbecue, winning Grand Champion at the Kingsford Invitational.

Tuffy also co-owns four Q Barbeque restaurants in Richmond, VA.  He recently opened a fifth restaurant, Rancho T, in April 2015. He has been a judge and host on the Destination America reality television show BBQ Pitmasters from 2009 - 2015.

Tuffy Stone

Tuffy

Stone

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CONVERSATION WITH OUR HERO INTERVIEW

QUESTION:
What goes through your head when you first wake up in the morning?
ANSWER:
My first thought upon waking up is thinking about the meats I’ll be cooking. Barbecue takes time and coordination, so I need to think of when to season the meat and when to put the meat on the pit, so that they all cook to tender and juicy at the right moment. The big cuts like brisket and pork shoulder take longer, so they need to go on first. After that I think about ribs, then chicken. After this my mind drifts to the fire. I need to get my fire lit, so that my coals are ready and the pit is up to temperature, so all of these meats will be done in time.
QUESTION:
Where is your favorite place to barbecue?
ANSWER:
I have cooked barbecue all over the world. It has such a universal appeal, which I love! If I had to pick a favorite place, it would be my backyard with my family & dogs.
QUESTION:
Tell us a favorite story from a day out?
ANSWER:
A day in Kuwait: I cooked for the troops in Kuwait and we had finished our second feeding of 3,000 troops. It was a hard day of work. When we finished, I encountered a few of the troops seated in old schoolroom chairs, leaning back with their eyes closed. I asked them how the food was, and one replied that it was great and that he closed his eyes for a moment and he felt like he was home. This was why we were there.
QUESTION:
Who are your heroes?
ANSWER:
My grandmother. She had the ability to make everyone in the room feel special. She taught me how to fish and gave me some of my first recipes for cooking.
QUESTION:
If there is any love­-hate relationship with any aspect of what you do, can you describe what that is?
ANSWER:
I love the ability to take tough cuts of meats and cook them to tasty and succulent with a fire fueled by wood. Cooking this way, and especially at competitions, can be quite draining physically and mentally, and this part of the process can be difficult. Also competitions require more time away from home.
QUESTION:
What sound or noise do you love?
ANSWER:
Sizzle, fire, crackle, or roar
QUESTION:
What would be your day job if you weren’t doing what you are currently doing?
ANSWER:
Photographer, landscaper, or fishing guide

Tuffy

Stone

This circles back around to my desire to always improve. I don’t seem able to let my mind rest on not striving to find new ways to do things better or even new opportunities.
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