I'm not sure of any other year in recent memory that wishing someone Happy New Year actually meant more. No other year offers such uncertainity than 2017. One thing for certain though that we're already hard at work planning for out 10th Chowdafest celebration!
We've come a long way from just a handful of local restaurants and a couple hundred fans to now having acclaimed restaurants from all over New England compete and over 10,000 in attendance! While we've promoted our great sponsors and restaurants, we've also raised enough to fund over a million meals for the hungry in the process!
We're excited about all the special plans we have in store for this year's 10th event. We hope this is the best yet and want to thank all the volunteers over the years that helped us make each Chowdafest better than the last!
Here's to a great year filled with love, hope, succes and of course, chowder!
As the New England Chowdafest continues to grow in popularity, the more calls and emails we field from discernible foodies who are on the road looking to find great chowder, soup and bisque so we created The Chowda Trail! It's the latest trail in CT and among one of the state's biggest! Unlike other trails, the Chowda Trail is a living, breathing trail that changes each year to reflect the incredible restaurants entered in the Chowdafest competition each year. There are more than 40 stops on the trail and most of these trail stops are here in CT but don't let that stop you from traveling all over New England to visit those restaurants that come to CT to compete for the title best in New England. Of course, you'll find all these great soups all at one place this fall at Chowdafest but Chowdafest just gives you a taste of what these great chefs can do. You gotta go visit them to experience the rest of their decadent menu!
Some of the stops are classic shoreline clam and seafood shacks but only open seasonally so if you don't see them this summer, you'll have to wait to next year. Some stops may bring you to the middle of a city like Hartford, Portsmouth, Newport, New Haven or Stamford while other stops are off the beaten path but oh, so worth the detour. Be sure to let each place know you're a Chowdafest fan. Now, this is our first year at promoting the Chowda Trail and we'll be working to improve it by your comments and ideas. Maybe we'll eventually include a passport that can get stamped at each place or put together some kind of contest but for now, it's a listing pointing you towards restaurants and chefs that have distinguished themselves with great chowder, soup or bisque to garner a coveted invite to compete in Chowdafest 2016. Stay tuned for further developments.
Jim Keenan: Creator and Chief Chowda-head.