Teams that Do Know Jack: The Black Pig BBQ

For today’s “Teams that Do Know Jack” feature spotlight, I want to thank Wilfred Reinke for helping me get in touch with this team.  Today’s post has us crossing over the US/Canada border to London, Ontario to feature The Black Pig BBQ.

This may be the first time I have heard of The Black Pig BBQ, but they are certainly not lacking in credibility!  Some of their accomplishments include, but are certainly not limited to, the following:

  • Three 1st-place finishes in the Canadian Southern BBQ Association (CSBBQA) Whole Hog Championship
  • 1st place Beef — Anything Butt at 2011 Memphis in May
  • 3rd place Ribs at the 2010 Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational Barbecue
  • Grand Champion at the 2010 Upper Canada BBQ Championship
  • 1st place at the National Zantac Chili Challenge for the last 3 years

The team is led by Mike Callaghan, more affectionately known as the Big Dog, and his wife Barb van Rassel.  Mike is the pitmaster and chief cook for the team, while Barb handles the logistics during the “controlled chaos”.

Mike and Barb
Mike and Barb

Newest members of the team include Darin Evans and Courtney Searson.  Darin and Courtney were both members of the River Rats Amateur Team prior to joining The Black Pig BBQ.  They were  quickly plucked away from the amateur ranks after seeing Darin take the Amateur Grand Championship in Ottawa and consistently placing in the top 5 in competitions entered.

Darin and Courtney
Darin and Courtney

As I reviewed the website for The Black Pig BBQ (, I was very impressed with everything that the team had accomplished thus far.  But after speaking with Darin, I was even more impressed by the character shown by Mike.  To paraphrase Darin, Mike provided him the support and encouragement to make it through his rookie season.  The common phrases I kept hearing were “great person” and “father figure”.

Now that I have read up and done my research on The Black Pig, I’m looking forward to hearing great things!  Big Wayner’s BBQ Blog wishes Mike, Barb, Darin, Courtney, and the rest of the team the best of luck at the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational Barbecue.  If you’d like to have your team featured, please contact Wayne at [email protected].

If you haven’t done so already, check out the previous “Teams that Do Know Jack” posts spotlighting Pork Barrel BBQ and DivaQ.

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Author: Big Wayner

Big Wayner is the mad brains behind Big Wayner's BBQ Blog. A full-time RVer, he enjoys sharing his passion for all things BBQ with anyone and everyone he meets.