18th Chili Cookoff!

Update 030911

Corrected Contestant List for this year
and List of First Place Winners for all 18 Years

Thanks to Andy White, who kept better records than the 3 reporters present at the event

18th Annual Great Yuba Pass Chili Cookoff Contestant List

1) Downie Chapter 1849
2) Dale Arnett
3) Keree Loving
4) Jim's Chili
5) Loco Cheap Chili (Rick)
6) Sierra Billy Chili (Lee-Mike)
7) Sheep Herder Chili
8) Yellow or Red Chili Journalism (Don)
9) Habanero Chili Delight (Dan)
10) Head First Chili (Andy)
11) Tess' Is It Chili Yet (Tess)
12) SCP Squirrel Chili (Larry)
13 Mom's Red Hot Chili (Marian)
14) Leroy's Chili Verde
15) Eat Heat (Mark)
16) Brentwood Blast
17) Cheap Pot Chili (Jude)
18) We Aint Kosher (Bob)
19) Bowmans's Brew
20) Saras Chili (Bryan Sparks)
21) Rattlesnake Chili (Jeannine Hudson)
22) Wess' Chili (Red Moose)
23 Neither Wimpy (Chuck Henson)
24) Fungi Con Carne #3 (Jeff Toraanson)
25) Hellfire Chili (Rick Young)

The Great Yuba Pass Chili Cookoff Winners List

1994   Open-Da-Can Chili (J.J. Janzen)
1995   Habanero Delight (Dan Henson)
1996   Head First (Andy White)
1997   Eat My (Rick Clough)
1998   Fowler Lost It (Bill Fowler)
1999   Cajun Gator (Joann Chesney)
2000   Loganville Lamb (Bowman)
2001   Road Hog (Rick Simi)
2002   Tatoo You (Rick Simi)
2003   Cajun Gator (Joann Chesney)
2004   Head First (Andy White)
2005   Road House (Rick Simi)
2006   Head First (Andy White)
2007   Sour Grape Girls (Gals on Grapes)
2008   Rattlesnake Chili (Jannine Hudson)
2009   Marian LaFollette
2010   Habanero Delight (Dan Henson)
2011   Carrie Loving

The 18th Annual Yuba Pass Chili Cook Off

The sky was (occasionally) blue, the chili was (exceptionally) delicious and the crowd was (increasingly) jovial on Saturday at the Yuba Pass for the 18th annual chili cook off.

There were about a hundred (maybe less) chili concoctions, serving a thousand (probably fewer) chili lovers.  

The company was grand, as East Siders and West Siders and Back Sliders and Side Winders all joined together in an orgy of spices, found meats and inevitable intestinal bloating.

The Prospect chili (special thanks to Cooter for the mystery meat) garnered the coveted Ass Last trophy for a chili based on black beans, meat marinated in something for a long time, and by products.  Key to the win: the Dissenting Editor was a judge.  She claims to have gone vegetarian on us, and there weren’t many meat free chilies, so who the hell knows how she was able to judge chili.  

Don Russell, whose girth has made him a local landmark, plied chili tasters with brown liquor, most of which was wasted once his chili was tasted.  An often heard comment at Russell’s table: “That’s not going to wash out.”

Russell is responsible for much about the YPCCO, the lack of rules, the emphasis on cheating, and the misinformation that this was the 17th annual when it was the 18th annual Cook Off.  

The judges were Liz Fisher, Jim Johnsen, and Charles Ervin.  Liz Fisher is easily bribed, but is too pro-social to stay bought.  Ervin really is a judge, and was much too thoughtful about the chili; he’s recently elected and probably still takes the whole “judge” thing too seriously.  Jim Johnsen didn’t seem to be affected by bullshit or moonshine.  It was a tough year.

Here are some helpful hints for winning for next year’s cooks:
1.  Don’t make chile verde.  It looks fresh like bad chili looks on the way up.  
2. Don’t worry about the chili, have something special there for the judges.  Great chili never got anyone anything at the Cook Off.  The judges generally have a short attention span, and really only remember the first chili and the last, so you have to have something nice to cool them off that they’ll remeber.  We saw people offering ice cream and mixed drinks, and cold hard liquor to numb the senses.  These are all good ideas and next year plan to offer the judges chocolate sorbet with Kahlua and cream.
3. If you don’t cheat, no one will respect you, it’s like politics or professional sports!

This Year’s Winners: (We didn’t pay very good attention)

1st Prize: Kasey

Peoples’ Choice: East Heat

2nd Place: The Clampers

3rd : Bob Morales of Sierra City

4th: Bobby Bowman

5th: Jude with Cheat Pot Chili

6th: Jim’s Chili

7th: Marian with Mom’s Red Hot Chili

8th: Jeanie of Intermountain Disposal

9th: Rick Simi

10th & Ass Last: The Sierra County Prospect

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