Taste of Reston Guns n’ Hoses Chili Cook-off Recap.


The “Guns” win it. The Fairfax County CSI accepts trophy.

The 20th Annual Taste of Reston, Northern Virginia’s largest outdoor food festival,  produced by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce, concluded this past Sunday at the Reston Town Center. This year’s event marking their 20th year celebration and featured more than 30 area restaurants, a full line-up of musical entertainment, a kid’s activity tent and, for the first time, a chili cook-off battle between local police and firefighters. It was a super hot day but the chili was even hotter!

The first annual Guns n’ Hoses Chili Cook-off pitted local area police against fire fighters – the ultimate battle of the heroes –  this time in aprons in front of chili pots. There were five different chilis submitted to the panel of judges anonymously, identified only with a number. The panel of judges was comprised of three food writers or critics and one police officer judge and a firefighter judge. Together the panel of five judges voted on a scale of 0-5 using the following categories: Aroma, Color, Consistency, Taste, and Aftertaste to determine the “overall best chili”. The judges used an official International Fire Chiefs Association chili cook-off judging sheet and received instructions and assistance by Shawn Kelly with the International Fire Chiefs Association and Jill Collins, who were co-chairs for the event. In addition to the award for best chili according to the taste tester judges, Taste of Reston attendees voted for the “People’s Choice” chili.

Judges: Sandy Greeley, Michael Birchenall, and Lisa Shapiro

The official judges were:

The hilarious event’s masters of ceremonies was MIX107.3’s Tommy McFly and News Channel 8’s Katherine Amenta. They certainly kept the suspense alive! The Winners of the Guns n’ hoses first annual chili cook-off was the Fairfax County Police, Crime Scene Investigation unit. Mark Ingrao, President and CEO, Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce presented the winners with their trophy. “Big Belly Chili” won the “People’s Choice” chili.

Take a look at the Slide Show below for some great photos of the event! Congrats to all of the participants! See you next year at the Taste of Reston!

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