Got a killer chili recipe? Of course you do. Get your ingredients ready for the 2nd annual L.A. Ale Club Chili Cook-off on April 2nd at 38 Degrees Ale House. Organized by L.A. Ale Club founder Chris Spradley, a chili cook-off circuit regular and the Sales Manager at soon-to-launch SoCal Brewing Co., the event benefits Pints for Prostates (we're imagining the look on the face of the IRS agent who received that 501(c)3 application). According to its website, Pints for Prostates is “a grassroots campaign that uses the universal language of beer to… raise awareness among men about the need for regular health screenings and PSA testing by making appearances at beer festivals, social networking and pro bono advertising.” And chili cook-offs. Sounds like a great idea to us.
You don't have to be a cook to attend the cook-off. “Eaters” are welcome too.
Spradley founded the L.A. Ale Club three years ago. “I was fairly new to L.A., and finding craft beer here wasn't as easy as it is today,” he says. “I just decided I'll start a beer tasting group, sort of be the Pied Piper of craft beer… a lot of our group members are seasoned beer people who know what beers they like, a lot are new people who couldn't pick a craft beer out of the lineup.” The group gathers at various craft beer bars around town “from Pasadena to Seal Beach to Valencia,” he says.
The chili cook-off is one of the club's annual events, but you do not need to be a club member to participate. There are two divisions this year, one for chili made with beer (the cook must display a bottle, full or empty, of the beer used in the chili with their finished product), the other is a catch-all category. The latter, says Spradley, is literally exactly that. “Anything you want to put in your chili is fair game.”
Winners receive cash prizes in amounts to be determined by the number of participants (the $20 entry fee for chili cooks goes directly to the cash prizes, so more cooks means bigger payouts).
Eaters will serve as the competition's judges. Each eater gets to cast one vote for best-of-show. We highly recommend stopping by the L.A. Bakesale For Japan that morning to get a few palate-cleansing sweets.
Chili cooks, consider yourself forewarned that Spradley, who won the event (1st place) last year along with 38 Degrees co-owner Brian Sugita (2nd place), will again be entering the chili beer division. Spradley's beer of choice this year? SoCalBeer Co.'s Red Carpet Ale, of course.
Where: 38 Degrees Ale House
When: Saturday, April 2, 1 to 4 p.m.
Cost: The entry fee for chili cooks is $20. To enter as a cook, email Chris Spradley. The entry fee for chili “eaters” is $10, with all chili eater money going to Pints For Prostates. Chili “eaters” can pre-register for the event through the Ale Club. Tickets will also be available at the door the day of the event.
Per Spradley: The number of tickets sold will be determined by the number of chili cooks; once that total is reached, there will be no more at the door tickets available.