Yesterday’s West End Gastro Club chili and soup cook-off fundraiser at the West End Youth Center yesterday was quite a success. Not only were there more participating restaurants, attendance was also higher than last year. With the addition of soup to the cook-off this year, the judges had much more to sample this time around.
The winners, in our opinion, were fairly clear cut, and the judging panel actually ended up awarding Best Soup and Best Chili to the same restaurant. Stooges had by far the most flavorful and complex chili, comprised of bison, beef tips, and pork. It was topped off by cilantro creme fraiche and smoked gouda and made for one hell of a dish. Their soup was a butternut squash soup. While that’s a bit of a played out concept, theirs was exceptional, delivering a rich and creamy texture with spices that gave a subtle but pleasing aftertaste. Cheers to Stooges for the awards sweep this year. Jack Callaghan’s Alehouse came in second place in both categories.
In addition to the judged awards, Henry’s Salt of the Sea took People’s Choice in soup for their seafood gumbo and Stooges won People’s Choice for their chili. Callaghan’s also took second place in both People’s Choice categories.
Not only was there a lot of great food to be had, Victory had their new Swing Session Saison and Hijinx had their Class III Pale Ale available for free to wash down all the samplers. Check out the pics below and we hope to see you at next year’s cook-off!
Hijinx on draft
Soups ready to be judged
Pepper-topped cupcakes from Trixie’s
Announcing the winners
This year’s chili and soup awards