Queensland awards its favourite sausages

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 10th August 2010

Queensland awards its favourite sausages

The 2010 Queensland Sausage King has awarded the year’s best Queensland sausages, from a field of over 800 top sausages, already awarded in regional competitions around Queensland.

Among the 46 awards, six overall winners were chosen, each top of their class: Trinity Beach Quality Meats for their beef sausage, Zac’s Meats for pork, Kingwood Park Butchery for their Lamb, Feta & Shallots sausage. The best continental sausage was awarded to Circle T Meats for their Spanish Chorizo. Top Gourmet sausage was the Beef Curry & Onion from Terry Orreals Quality Meats. Top for Poultry was Allora Butchery for their Chicken, Cheese and Chives sausage.

All the winning contestants will go on to represent Queensland at next year’s National Titles in Tasmania. Queensland sausages took home three National awards at this year’s Titles in February.

Judges this year included chief judge Allan Rowan (Bunzl Food Processor Supplies), panel judges Alan Chisholm (Australian Wholesale Meats), Peter Galbraith (Vadals), and Antony Van Der Drift (Gotzinger Smallgoods) and presenting judge Gary McPherson (Meat & Livestock Australia). The event, held at Queensland’s Ekka, was MC’d by local culinary identity Peter Howard, with cook Errol Rees of Kerry Ingredients keeping the snags turning.

Rees offered a few tips on the perfect snag: “The important thing is to cook them slowly on medium heat. If you put a cold sausage onto a hot surface they may expand and break.  They must be turned regularly and evenly.  You don’t want to prick them to release liquid, as it is that fat and water that carries the flavour of the meat.”

Rowan said a good sausage “…uses fresh products, is made with good equipment, and is properly mixed with seasoning or flavorings.” Each sausage was subject to stringent criteria, including 100% accurate labelling, a rating for appearance, a slicing to see if they have been evenly mixed, and when cooked they must not shrink or break apart.  Finally, an individual snag is tasted by the panel of three industry judges.

Trinity Beach Quality Meats owner Russell Perkins was enthusiastic about his first place in the Beef Sausage section. “I’m rapt! The way I make them was as good as I could, so if we didn’t win, it doesn’t matter, but I’ll be putting an ad in the paper tomorrow!”

The competition is run every year by the Australian Meat Industry Council as part of the Royal Queensland Food & Wine Show and supported by the meat industry.

“The Sausage King competition represents a remarkable journey for our sausage manufacturers.  It started off 12 years ago as butchers talking in a country town, and just got bigger.  Now it’s amazing how many independent butchers have taken to it…they put flavours into sausages I never thought you could – it’s fantastic,” said Gail Butler, AMIC organiser.