029 Gus – Gusface Grillah

Gus fr Gusface GrillahOne of the friendliest guys in the BBQ scene, Gus from Gusface Grillah joins me in The Confessional for Ep 10 of Season 2 ‘Living the Dream’. You’ve seen the glorious pictures of his ‘Stoner Burger’ on social media and you may have had a crack at recreating it. Hell, you might have been the motivation for it! Gus runs a business based around his blog and in this episode details how he did it. Please be sure to subscribe and leave a review of this episode.

He’s been in the BBQ game since since before the ABA even started in Australia. He’s one of the first BBQ bloggers in the country and was one of the first teams to ever compete. He’s been here, in the scene from day one and has built himself a business that mirrors his passion. If you have ever wondered what a blog is and how it works, make sure you catch this episode.

Much thanks and appreciation go to this episodes sponsors:

Ministry of Smoke

Pit Brothers BBQ

JAGRD Woodfired Smoker Ovens

Still want more? Be sure to pick up your free ebook: 27 Lessons Learned from Competition BBQ

Show Notes
  • When Masterclasses get cancelled coz of weather
    • He just took all the ingredients home to cook again later
    • He had enough burgers for 30 people
  • 2017 was a big year
    • Had a daughter
    • Started Perth BBQ School at the same time she was born
    • The school started off the back of the lessons he’d been doing for Jay at Meatstock
    • Also competed a couple of times and did quite well – picked up an 2 RGCs and a GC
  • He always impressed by the generosity of the BBQ scene, helping each other out
  • He got into BBQ thanks to his Dad who always did ‘special occasion’ roasts for birthdays, Christmas etc
    • Then he started to hear more and more about pulled pork so he went and bought himself a Hark TriFire
    • This is when he started the blog, GusFace Grillah
  • He loves burgers for a quick and delicious mid-week cook
    • His inspiration comes from either finding or being given a theme and building from there
  • The Stoner Burger
    • Invented for the guy at home who’s stoned and just goes to the fridge and throws it all together to make a burger
    • Pizza for bottom bun, burger patty, cereal, ham and cheese roll for top bun
  • Burger Tips
    • Have a go and reflect if it doesn’t work
    • Classic Cheeseburger – patty, cheese, pickles, onion, sauce
    • Think about the flavours – acidic, fatty, vinegary and find complimentary combinations
    • If you have fat from meat and cheese, how are you going to balance them out?
    • Mince your own meat and have a good fat to meat balance – keep your offcuts, especially after comps due to large amounts of brisket offcuts
  • Gusface Mince available from Troy’s Meats in Balcatta
    • Gus has an article on his website for how to make the mince yourself at home
  • The reason for the rise and rise of low’n’slow in Australia
    • BBQ has always been a big part of Australian culture
    • It’s evolved from burning sausages into more of a thoughtful experience
    • Tying into the slow food revolution
    • The American cultural influence in general
  • In the future
    • Australia is a melting pot of all different styles of cuisine
    • He’d like to see us put an Aussie spin on the BBQ scene E.g. Asian inspired brisket rather than just following in the footsteps of Americans
  • Gus loves hip hop, and so he adapted his blog name ‘Gusface Grillah’ from the rapper Ghostfaced Killah from Wu Tang Clan
  • His background was not from a writing background, but he has always enjoyed it
  • The blog started out showcasing him learning about BBQ and evolved into him showing others what he had learnt
  • A day in the life of a BBQ blogger
    • You work your BBQ around a full time job and social commitments
    • He writes when the passion strikes
    • His blog posts either get written very quickly or not at all
  • How do you make money blogging?
    • Basically you don’t
    • Eventually you’ll get the opportunity to highlight products, do reviews etc, mostly starting with rubs and other products
    • The point where the blog became a business is where the blog is used to leverage into other products
    • You’ve got marketing and experience behind you which you can leverage – once you’ve established yourself as a person of authority
    • If you want to start a blog, do it because you want to do it, not because you want to make money or start a business out of it
    • It’s really important to find your own voice in your writing – Gus likes to include a joke or two
  • Essential skills for a blogger
    • Spelling and grammar need to be pretty good
    • Knowing that ‘Weber’ only has one ‘b’
    • Ability to write is handy
    • Everybody learns in different ways, so if you’re good on camera, do that. If you’re good at writing, do that
  • What sort of people are suited to blogging?
    • There are many different takes on blogging – Instagram, Blog, Facebook
    • Choose an area that you’re skilled in
    • The people that are going to be successful are the ones that are passionate about it. If you love what you do, you’ll find a way to tell people about it
  • What can people do today to get started?
    • Just start. Start writing and see what happens
  • Biggest challenge and how did he overcome it?
    • Time – choose how you allocate the time
  • Biggest success and to what do he attribute it?
    • His BBQ RGC at Yaks
    • It was the biggest comp in Perth to date
    • Businesswise, his biggest success was opening his BBQ school, and getting photos from his students of what they’ve cooked afterwards
  • How does he rate being a blogger?
    • He rates it highly coz he is so passionate about it – solid tens
  • Listener Questions
    • What kind of content gets the most traction on his blog?
      • BBQ Guides do well E.g. The Snake Method
    • Best avenue for promoting his blog?
      • No one avenue – need multiple
      • He did a social media training session once and learnt that you need to not be the guy pushing business cards onto people at a party
      • Don’t SPAM across the entire internet – it’ll be to your detriment in the end
    • Has Gus done any training in food styling?
      • No he hasn’t – he’s just evolved over time
      • Started with an iPhone and bad lighting
      • Learned on the job, tweaking each time
      • Got some tips from photographer mates
    • How does he keep his audience engaged?
      • If he enjoyed talking about it, the he’d post about it
      • He worked from his level of enjoyment and assumed others would enjoy it to
      • If he could enjoy writing it then people would enjoy reading it
      • Treat a blog like a public journal and write it coz you enjoy it
    • How often does he blog and how does he find consistent subjects to blog about?
      • Consistency has been an issue for him – the website has been on again off again
      • Life often gets in the way
      • He just writes about things when he feels inspired
    • What did Gus think was missing that motivated him to start his own blog?
      • He started before the explosion of interest in BBQ in Australia so he thought he’d start documenting his learning curve
  • His top 3 tips for people who want to get into blogging
    • Only do it if you want to do it, not because you want a particular outcome – it’s a labour of love
    • Choose your medium – writing, photography, video etc
    • Choose your own style. E.g. Gus likes to include jokes in his articles