Diva Q Lays Out BBQ's Number One Ground Rule - Exclusive

If there's one thing that Danielle Bennett — aka Diva Q — cannot stand anymore, it's mansplaining. "I'm really over the whole mansplaining thing at this point," the pit master exclusively told Mashed. "That still happens for all female barbecuers."

That's a rule of thumb that you should probably learn pretty fast if you frequent or plan on frequenting BBQ competitions. Take it from Bennett, who, in addition to being a meat-science aficionado like no one else you've met, has racked up her fair share of perfect 180 scores at contests. 

"If a person's at a contest, they probably have a clue what they're doing, to some degree," Bennett advised. "Be respectable of everybody that's at a barbecue contest. This also goes with when you see people posting things on Instagram or social media ... I always get a kick out of it because I'll do something a certain way and they're like, 'Why didn't you do it this way?' Because this is my house and this is how I do it. I'm not going to tell you what to do in your house."

Respect for fellow BBQ lovers aside, Bennett says there's another rule you should always follow if you want the BBQ community to welcome you with open arms.

BBQ's number one ground rule, revealed

In his book-turned-bible "Kitchen Confidential," Anthony Bourdain wrote of the importance of never touching another chef's station in a commercial kitchen. The same, says Diva Q, more or less applies to the BBQ world. "One of the underlying things when it comes to barbecue and the number one rule [would be], 'Don't touch my grill unless I've told you to,'" Bennett dished to Mashed. "If you touch my grill and I haven't asked you to lift that lid, I am not going to be a happy camper. I don't think any other barbecuer is."

This is not a suggestion. It's a Gordon Ramsay-style, "Kitchen Nightmares"-level mandate. The only exception to it? Disaster. "That is the golden rule," Diva Q emphasized. "Do not ever [touch someone else's grill], unless it's on fire. That would be the only exception, and then grab a box of baking soda and a fire extinguisher."

One of Diva Q's favorite whiskeys is WhistlePig SmokeStock. When you pick up a bottle of SmokeStock, you'll find more recipes and discover how SmokeStock is crafted via a QR code on the back of each bottle. SmokeStock is now available online and in stores for $72.99 MSRP per 750 ml bottle. Stay tuned for a line of must-have consumables from Traeger x WhistlePig coming later this fall!