Spicing Up Northern Wisconsin with a Chili Cook Off
SOLON SPRINGS, Wis. —On this usually warm, but still chili day one Bar and Grill in none other than Solon Springs is hosting a cook off. One that looks to spice up the competition.
Paul’s Pour House Bar and Grill has only been open for a decade, and for the last 6 years he found a way to warm people up in the cold Northern Wisconsin winters.
“It kind of runs itself now, because everybody here knows about it. Since it’s been going on for so long,” said bar owner Paul Banks.
This time, Paul’s Pour House Bar and Grill saw 12 different contestants in this annual tradition. With chilis ranging from spicy, to mild, to some even white. But the secret to winning this cook off is hoping that the flavor is unique enough to stand out from the rest, as everyone is the judge rating out of the 12 chilis what three are considered their top three.
“Now I’m going back for seconds on the ones that I like to make sure and try to pick my number one,” said #8 contestant Gloria Bayard. “I’m leaning towards the one that I have right now, number 5, which is the chicken chili.”
“Everyone has a different taste you know, I like that (number two) has a meat in it that I like that I couldn’t name, but it was good. It was different than regular hamburger,” said chili taste tester Rob Ronning.
But after countless dishes of chilis, a winner was eventually crowned. “It feels great,” said winner Paul Reder. Reder thought for sure that chili dish number five, the chicken chili would win as his dish was all trail and error. But in the end, it all worked out . “It’s all about sautéing everything, cooking it with Winery Oktoberfest Beer, and bloody mary mixes.”