Chowdafest VII 2014: Recap, Winners, Results + Our Faves at Calf Pasture Beach

13 Oct
Chowdafest Collage 2014 VII

Click through to see a full album of competitors, soups, and other good stuff!

This past Sunday just might have been the perfect fall day. The air was crisp (but not too cold), the sun was shining bright, and the leaves had just started to flame into color. Oh, and it just so happened to be the day when Chowdafest scuttled down by the water at Calf Pasture Beach in Norwalk. The same Chowdafest that started off at a church, then at a school, quickly grew to Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, then grew so big this past February that they needed to expand to an even bigger venue…and that takes us Chowdafest VII!

First up, Chowdafest was divided up into two huge sections with the check-in booths, Farmer’s Cow ice cream, Cracker Barrel cheese, the first half of soups, and Tacos Mexico on the left, wine and Sierra Nevada tastings (we dug the option to pay $5 for a pint), the last half of soups, Osteria Romana, Goldfish, and more. This spread out setup made it much easier to get around and definitely cut down on wait times. People were in great spirits, we met some great readers like Mario, and we had a chance to catch up with lots of the awesome chefs and restaurant owners…oh, and we ate 35 different soups!

There was a map to help you get to your next soup and the cups were numbered, so it was even easier than ever to vote and slurp the hell out of all that soup, chowda, and bisque. In terms of numbers of Chowdaheads and money raised for Community Plates, that will come in soon, so we’ll update then. Well, without further ado, here are the results along with our top choices…

Winners for Chowdafest VII

Chowdafest 2014 OmNomCTOct 12, 201435Classic New England Clam Chowder:
1st:  Donovan’s (Norwalk)
2nd: O’Neill’s (Norwalk)
3rd:  Spark’s Sports Grill (Norwalk)

Traditional Clam Chowder:
1st:  Gray Goose (Fairfield) – Manhattan clamGray Goose Chowdafest 2014 OmNomCTOct 12, 201459
2nd: Liquid Lunch (Shelton/Milford) – Manhattan clam
3rd:  Dunville’s (Westport) – Manhattan clam
* highest rated Rhode Island: Westfair Fish & Chips (Westport)

Creative Chowder:
The Spread Chowdafest 2014 OmNomCTOct 12, 201451st:  The Spread (Norwalk) – Chorizo & Shrimp Chowder
2nd: Brewhouse (Norwalk) – Roasted Corn & Chicken Chowder
3rd:  Liquid Lunch (Shelton/Milford) – The Great Pumpkin & Lobster Chowder

Donovan's Chowdafest 2014 OmNomCTOct 12, 2014351st:  Soup Thyme (Monroe) – Chicken Pot Pie Soup
2nd: Tikkaway (New Haven) – Chicken Cilantro Bisque
3rd:  Local Kitchen & Beer Bar (Fairfield/Norwalk) – Thanksgiving Harvest Bisque
* highest rated lobster bisque: LobsterCraft (Darien)

Our Top Picks (No Specific Order)

Both: The Brewhouse, Cask Republic, Donovan’s, Ginger Man, Gray Goose, High Tide Gourmet, Liquid Lunch Farmhouse Manhattan Clam, O’Neill’s, Parallel Post, SBC Spinach Artichoke, Simply Delicious, The Spread

9 Responses to “Chowdafest VII 2014: Recap, Winners, Results + Our Faves at Calf Pasture Beach”

  1. A. Chef October 16, 2014 at 12:31 pm #

    When you take an American Icon, such as Clam Chowder and add Chorizo to it, that is blasphemy.
    It is like taking a classic like Coq au Vin and adding ketchup to the wine.


    • Dan and Kristien Del Ferraro October 16, 2014 at 12:44 pm #

      If chefs took no creative license in interpreting dishes, where would we be? We’d all be eating the same food. The only way to know if something is bad is to try it. If you immediately discount something because it sounds different, then you just might be cutting yourself off from great dishes and new possibilities. Of course after you try it, you’re allowed to say that something wasn’t good, but you can’t discount another chef’s hard work because you disagree philosophically. So, just wondering, do you actually prepare all of your dishes in the classic manner with no variations at all? Then we’d ask you, whose recipes, because those recipes are most likely based off of another recipe.


    • A.Chef October 16, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

      Obviously not a properly trained cook.


  2. RK October 14, 2014 at 12:18 am #

    This fundraiser began at the Unitarian Church, not at a school.


    • Dan and Kristien Del Ferraro October 14, 2014 at 5:20 am #

      Thanks, you’re totally right…we left out that part. Thanks for looking out for us. :)


      • Crissy October 14, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

        are there any other pictures from the event? We asked the photographer who was walking around to snap a picture of our group…but I don’t see it here? Will you post more crowd pics?


        • Dan and Kristien Del Ferraro October 14, 2014 at 9:31 pm #

          Hey Crissy. We have a slideshow on FB, but didn’t take too many pics of the crowd. Try HamletHub and Stamford Advocate…they are usually the ones for group pics.



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