Dayton’s biggest chili cookoff was Friday night and we have the loving spoonfuls. A charity that helps disabled Miami Valley residents was given an annual budget boost from the 31st annual event.
There were 17 restaurants and amateur cooks vying for the title of BEST CHILI at the AMBUCS Chili Cookoff this weekend, and the results are in. For the first time ever, the people’s choice top 3 matched The Food Adventures top 3 picks. THE WINNERS ARE…..
#1 CHRISTOPHER’S RESTAURANT’S BUFFALO CHICKEN CHILI:
Delicious, melt in your mouth flavors of simmered chicken and the heat of a buffalo sauce, all in a creamy chili. We topped our bowl with a light sprinkle of shredded mozzarella. This recipe was a risk going off the beaten path of traditional chili’s but in this case, it paid off. Chef John always takes time to talk to the Food Adventures Crew, and we congratulate him and Christopher’s on the big win.
#2 THE BRUNCH CLUB’S SWEET CHILI:
Big Ragu was loving the cute servers in Bengal’s attire, but the chili stole Hungry Jax’s stomach. An interesting twist on a traditional chili, this one was sweet and thinner than most chilis. The result was a chili that really grows on you with each bite. We found ourselves with raised eyebrows craving more of this sweet stuff. A definite stand out in our book, and second place in the competition.
#3 MEADOWLARK’S CHILI with PITA CHIPS:
A traditional chili served with pita chips made in house, and a dab of sour cream. We also sprinkled a bit of shredded provolone cheese on top. This was fantastic. The flavor was so good and it was obvious this was a top contender. Perfectly seasoned and simmering, the chili was one of the best we tasted. In the end, we put them in 3rd place in this tough field of amazing chili.
The Food Adventure crew wanted to give and Honorable Mention to a couple of restaurants that we feel, rounded out the top 5. They were #4 LONGHORN STEAKHOUSE and #5 SLYDER’s who were close to the top 3. Both versions were meaty chili’s with beans and the traditional Tex-Mex type hearty chili that Americans have grown to love.
Please understand, every single booth had some good chili. The trick was to have your chili be absolutely incredible to stand out in a field of good cooks. The competition was intense, the meat, sauce and beans were flying. Hot sauces, cheeses, jalapenos, crackers, draft beer and more made for a filling night.
Other Restaurants and Amateur Cooks that participated were in alphabetical order:
BILL’S AMAZING CHILI:
A hearty chili with slices of beef. This was a dark and flavorful chili and our first taste of the day.
BRIXX ICE CO:
Always a contender, they had a delicious shredded chicken chili, that was almost like a soup.
BUCKIN DONKEY GRILL:
We are so excited this awesome restaurant is back. Their chili entry was a tomato based chili with lots of huge sausage chunks.
A meaty chili with good flavor, this restaurant knows what they are doing. This one is great too, like all of their menu soups.
A Tex-Mex classic chili with beans and the traditional sauce. Good stuff and one of the “prettiest” chilis in the bowl.
DARK HORSE TAVERN:
A good traditional chili with beans, meat and great flavor. We are so glad this restaurant is back again on Byers Rd.
EL RANCHO GRANDE:
A Mexican twist, this chili had a swirl design in it from lots of cheddar cheese. The meat was grind down a lot and the chili had a yellow tin to it. We think it was from spices and cheeses.
A different dark and meaty chili. This was a gamble as the chili had a a very rich deep flavor. Points for uniqueness on this one.
GEORGE’S FAMILY RESTAURANT:
A solid traditional looking chili, with beans. It had some Greek seasoning that made the chili taste unique. The entry was good and ingenious that they passed out their restaurant menus to the tables beforehand.
This was a thinner chili and almost like a soup. The flavor was good and the meat was ground down very well. Many of you know that Harrigan’s is know fro their beefy burgers.. so you know the beef chili tasted good.
LOS REYES MEXICAN RESTAURANT:
Almost like a “Dayton dip” this thick chorizo chili was very very cheese filled. The result was a yellow colored chili with chunks of meat. It was mild tasting and very different than other entries.
The decision to pick the best entries was a daunting one. All of the chilis were tasty, and went for a great cause. Please visit these fine restaurants that give back to the community. It was a great time and benefited handicapped kids in this area.
Casino games and other fun contests filled the Colosseum.
The night also was filled with BEER, WINE and SOFT DRINKS. Did we mention HOT DOGS? Oh boy the AMBUCS charity hot dog booth was serving up some good ones. We indulged in all the drinks and food we could until we were stuffed.
The event benefits AMBUCS of Dayton. It is a charity that helps handicapped residents of the Miami Valley lead a more mobile life. Special walkers. bikes and mobile devices are donated to the families of those children and adults in need. The effect is a priceless improvement for their quality of life.
Next year’s chili cookoff will be FRIDAY NOVEMBER 16th, 2018:
Do you want to enter your chili? We are also looking for blackjack dealers and volunteers for next year. To get involved, go to BESTCHILI.ORG or call Paul Jankovich at 937-438-0345