The Truth About Erica Blaire Roby From BBQ Brawl Season 2

First a lawyer, next a sommelier, and then a mother, Erica Blaire Roby, is now also a barbecue pitmaster. The Wagyu beef-loving cook behind woman-run barbecue competition team Blue Smoke Blaire, is showing off her smoky skills on Food Network's second season of "BBQ Brawl." See how Roby fares against 11 other pitmasters in the competition, judged by Bobby Flay, Michael Symon, and Eddie Jackson.

Roby comes from a "long line of cooks and chefs" and started Blue Smoke Blaire in 2019 because her dad has had it on his bucket list to open a barbecue restaurant (via Vimeo). One look at her Instagram shows that the cook is passionate about all things beef, rubs, and learning from fellow barbecue lovers to improve her ability to cook for others. "Pitmasters are a tough as nails group of people, battling through bitter cold, freezing rain, sweltering heat, and one lane country roads," she wrote. "I have so much respect and love."

Erica Blaire Roby hopes to be an inspiration for other women in barbecue

Roby had a lot to learn before her first competition with Blue Smoke Blaire. To prepare, the Ohio native explained she "began training under some of the best names in the business" (via Vimeo). She's come a long way, serving as a brand ambassador for Mason Hill Cattle and winning a $7,500 grant from the Preserve the Pit fellowship program for rising stars in the Black barbecue community, per Monterey County Weekly.

The more Roby understood about barbecue, the more she "saw there was an area where females could really shine," she said of one of her competitions (via Vimeo). That's when she decided that her barbecue competition team would be all-female. Along with her "barbecue best friend," fellow "BBQ Brawl" contestant Taylor Carroll, Roby cooks ribs, brisket, and more at competitions in Tennessee, Texas, and beyond. "We are slowly but surely taking this barbecue world by storm," Roby said. "We hope that we're going to be able to inspire younger women to come out here and do this as well."