BLUE SPRINGS. Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs may just be the hungriest team in the NFL, according to a metro business, and it should know.
Zarda Bar-B-Q manned the smokers Wednesday to continue a Kansas City Training Camp tradition. This is the 34th year the business will haul massive amounts of food to camp and feed 150 members of the team and staff Thursday.
“We have the greatest city in the world. We think we have the greatest football team in the world, and the greatest cuisine in Kansas City barbeque,” Terry Hyer, chief operating officer of Zarda Bar-B-Q, said.
Zarda said it smoked hundreds of pounds of meat, including ribs and turkey, for the occasion.
Just like the Chiefs, barbecue isn’t complete without the delicious sides. Zarda is also hauling gallons of Cheesy Potato Bake, Burnt End Baked Beans, and White Cheddar Mac-n-Cheese.
These are just some of the quantities Zarda prepared to take:
- 100 pounds of Burnt Ends
- 75 pounds of Brisket
- 10 gallons of Baked Beans
- 7 gallons of Mac-n-Cheese
- 7 gallons of Cheesy Potatoes
The Chiefs will also have the choice of Zarda sauces to enjoy, including Zarda Original sauce, Bold and Spicy, Apple Harvest, Lil’Ghost and a few other options.
Hyer said he gets nervous every year that they will run out of food before the end of the meal.
“I think the perception is that the big offensive linemen eat the most, but my experience is these wide receivers and cornerbacks, and some of these guys they eat as much or more as these big offensive linemen,” Hyer said.
For some players who are new to the team, barbecue day at training camp will be the first time they experience Kansas City-style barbecue.
“Sometimes training camp for them is their first experience with Kansas City barbecue, and it’s fun to see them walk up and see what’s on the line with all these ribs, burnt ends, mac-n-cheese and the whole thing laid out. It’s an exciting time for them,” Hyer said. “The vets know what’s coming. The rookies, they don’t know if they haven’t been here.”
Hyer said Zarda will be enticing the Chiefs with a different menu next week. He said Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid is the only one to have Zarda feed the team twice during the same training camp.
It’s something the Chiefs players seem to look forward to as much as Zarda does.
“When we pull up and we’ve got our smoker out there, the players are walking up, and these are guys that are highly-skilled athletes, who are sticking their head in the smoker asking us how long the brisket needs to smoke, what kind of spice we’re doing, and they’re cooking at home,” Hyer said.
Zarda is also giving Chiefs a little special extra treatment.
Each year, Zarda takes something to training camp that’s either new or not on the restaurant’s regular menu.
This year the team will get to taste test a thick-cut Texas brisket seasoned with only salt and pepper. Hyde said it’s cooked longer and is so tender it can be cut with a butter knife.
They will also be enjoying white cheddar mac topped with a choice of burnt ends, pulled pork, or sliced brisket.
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