The North Market Fiery Foods Weekend February 16 & 17

fieryFoodPoster2013Stimulate, agitate and otherwise arouse your taste buds at the North Market Fiery Foods Weekend on February 16th and 17th. From special vendors to fiery foods cooking and eating contests plus kids activities and live music there’s mild to wild fun to be had at the North Market Fiery Foods Weekend.

Fiery foods vendors for the weekend so far include Aimee’s Blue Ribbon Spices, A Bit of a Bite Salsa, Bigfat’s Hot Sauce, Black Swamp Gourmet, Blaze Gourmet, Born to Hula, CaJohns Flavor & Fire, The Chesterville Pepper Company, Chuck Evans’ Montezuma Brand, Heartbreaking Dawns, Jac’s Tailgaters, The Madison Chocolatiers West, Mild to Wild Herb & Pepper Co., Mudflats Chef Inspired Sauces, Race City Sauce Works, Smoking J’s Fiery Foods, Sweet Thing Gourmet and Volcanic Peppers

Want to get directly in on the fiery foods action? Customers can take a shot at fame and fortune (OK, infamy and North Market gift certificates) in a number of contests. Make great green stuff? Then the Homemade Guacamole Contest is right up your alley. If you’ve got chops with chopped avocados, it’s the one for you. Then there’s the tried and true Amateur Salsa Contest. If you’ve got a good mix of chunky or pureed fruit or vegetable salsa, put it to the test against other homemade salsa makers. Or maybe you like to play with fire? For you we have the Amateur Hot Sauce Contest. Or one can prove their chili preparing proficiency in our ever-popular Customer Chili Cook-off. Finally, those with iron gullets can register on the day of the event for one of the myriad fiery food eating contests including Fiery Cornbread sponsored by Heartbreaking Dawns, Jalapenos, Spicy Meatballs sponsored by Race City Sauce works, Volcanic Popcorn Balls sponsored by Volcanic Peppers and Hot Wing eating contests. All contest winners will be rewarded with gift certificates and/or fiery foods prize packages.

In its eighth year the Chef Chili Challenge pits local chefs against one another as contenders for the title “North Market Chili Champ 2013,” a special trophy and $200 in North Market gift certificates.  Participating in the battle are market merchants (including Ben Walters of North Market Spices) and chefs from local restaurants (including Andrew Bell of Latitude 41, Justin Boehme of Da Levee, Janel Hedgepeth of Renaissance Banquet Services and Matthew White of Milestone 229).

Back this year: BEER! The brilliant brewers at Columbus Brewing Company and Elevator Brewing Company are concocting special spicy elixirs just for Fiery Foods Weekend at the North Market. You’ll be able to buy simply a sample, or if you are the brave sort, a whole pint for just $4.00.  Elevator is returning with “Hot Brown” Chipotle Nut Brown Ale, and their new Three Hot Frogs IPA made with 3 different chilies.  Columbus Brewing Company is crafting a piquant Habanero Bodhi. Also on tap will be a couple of non-throat-burning offerings (Elevator’s Fly’n Hydrant Light and CBC’s Pale Ale) to combat the capsaicin-laden offerings that will abound over the weekend.

“It is amazing to me how many devoted people flock to this event from far and wide,” said Mary Martineau, Director of Marketing at the North Market. “From the vendors selling their peppery products to the chefs in the Chili Challenge, from the fiery foods eating and making contestants to the event attendees, everybody is just extremely enthusiastic about their fiery foods and has a lot of fun.”

Fiery Foods Festival Schedule:
Saturday, February 16
  • 9-11 a.m., music by Ira Chaiffetz (banjo)
  • 10 a.m., Guacamole contest in Dispatch Kitchen
  • 11 a.m. – 2 p.m., face painting
  • 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Mark Wood Fun Show
  • 11 a.m., Chef Chili Challenge in northwest corner of mezzanine ($5 sample fee includes chef chili sampling)
  • 11 a.m., kids giveaways including cowboy hats, bandanas and sheriff badges
  • 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., music by Ian Hummel
  • 12:30 p.m., Hot Sauce Contest in the Dispatch Kitchen
  • 1-3 p.m., music by Island Breeze
  • 1:30 p.m., Fiery Cornbread eating contest sponsored by Heartbreaking Dawns in Dispatch Kitchen
  • 2:30 p.m., “Schweaty Samballs” Spicy Meatball eating contest sponsored by Race City Sauce Works in Dispatch Kitchen
  • 3-5 p.m., music by The Piano Peddler
  • 3:30 p.m., Jalapeno eating contest in Dispatch Kitchen
Sunday, February 17
  • 12-2 p.m., music by Angela Perley
  • 12:30  p.m., Amateur Chili Cook-off Contest in northwest corner of mezzanine ($5 sample fee includes amateur chili sampling)
  • 1 – 4 p.m., face painting
  • 2 p.m., Amateur Salsa Contest in Dispatch Kitchen
  • 2:45 p.m., Volcanic Popcorn Husker Balls from Hell eating contest sponsored by Volcanic Peppers in Dispatch Kitchen
  • 2-5 p.m., music by Willie Phoenix
  • 3:30 p.m., Hot Wing eating contest in Dispatch Kitchen

The North Market Fiery Foods Festival will take place on Saturday, February 16 and Sunday, February 17 and is a free event. A tasting fee of $5 on Saturday enables onlookers to sample the chilis of the professional chefs. A separate $5 tasting fee on Sunday applies to the chili by the amateur contestants. All tasting opportunities available only while supplies last.  Market hours are 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Saturday and 12 – 5 p.m. on Sunday. To participate in the Guacamole, Salsa or Hot Sauce Contests, the Customer Chili Cook-off or the Chef Chili Challenge, and for more information, please call (614) 463-9664 or email Sign up for the all fiery foods consumption contests will take place in the Dispatch Kitchen on the day of those events.

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