2nd Annual NWI & I-65 Interstate Chili Cook-Off

I've judged a good number of cook-offs since my sister and I started the blog and I was excited when Myron from Man's Man Chili reached out to me to invite us to judge this competition of the International Chili Society and the Chili Appreciation Society International in Merrillville. It was quite a competition and some of the winners advanced to the World Champion Chili Cook-Offs.

As the judges joined to do our chili tasting, we were informed that we had several previous World Champions who were competing. There was some stiff competition and there was a lot of chili for us to taste since there were four different categories being judged. We tried about 43 chilis in a four-hour period. There was a verde, a red, a vegetarian and a homestyle category. The homestyle was my favorite for tasting since it was the most like the traditional chili I like - with meat, beans and veggies. I'd never had verde chili before and it was interesting to notice the variation in each one even though they were all the same style.

None of them really had over-the-top heat, which I appreciated. I love flavor with just a little bit of burn. It was a fun afternoon for a good cause - the St. Jude House in Crown Point. I judged along with my husband (who is on social media as @chicagobeerbros) and a friend, Greg, from the Tasty 219 podcast and his son and a few others.

Myron, the organizer, is the process of making his chili spices available to the public. I look forward to following along and getting my hands on it once it is bottled and ready for sale. Check out his story on mansmanchili.com. And next year, keep an on the calendar for the 3rd annual event in May of 2025.