by Madison V. Fisler
Jan. 27, 2014. For the second year in a row, the restaurant title for the WinterFest Chilly Chili Challenge was claimed by John Parlier of Canyons in Blowing Rock.
“It feels good to be acknowledged again, and the trophy looks great sitting here at the bar,” Parlier said.
The winning chili was completely different from last year, with ingredients including dried chipotle and ancho chiles and even Mexican chocolate!
“I never make anything the same way twice and this is no different,” Parlier said.
“I used a lot of dried chiles as a base, because I wanted a clean chile taste. I also included mexican chocolate and bison meat. For things like this, I have been fascinated by Southwestern and Mexican flavors for about ten years, and I used a lot of those flavor profiles.”
For Monday only, the chili was served as a soup at Canyons Restaurant in Blowing Rock.
The Chilly Chili Challenge kicked off on Jan. 25 at 11 a.m.
The yearly chili cook-off between restaurants, freestyle cooks and proclaimed chili-masters was hot competition indeed, with many different entrants preparing their honed recipes to take home the top prize.
The competition annually draws a crowd of more than 1,000 people to try all of the different chili offered by the fierce competition.
Proceeds from the competition are going toward helping Blowing Rock School raise money for new playground equipment.