WinterFest Chowder Cook-Off winners named

Chowders from area restaurants are put to the test in the chowder cook-off at the annual Winterfest celebration in downtown North Adams. Saturday, February 15, 2020.

NORTH ADAMS — Over 4,000 samples of chowder entries were served from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, at the 23rd WinterFest Chowder Cook-Off.

A total of 351 ballots were cast for "People's Choice" favorites and write-ins for the "Only in North Adams" most unique chowder award.

Voters were asked to rank their top three favorites, though many just picked one. Competitors were awarded three points for every first-place mark, two points for each second-place mark and one point for every third-place mark.

In the People's Choice contest, Clarksburg School, a first-time entry, was awarded first place, with 333 points; Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts Dining, second place, with 271 points; and A-OK Berkshire Barbeque, third place, with 202 points.

In the Judges' Choice contest, Grazie won first place, Bounti-Fare took second and Wild Oats Market placed third.

The entries were blind-tasted by judges Nick Moulton, chef at Mezze Bistro; Nina Zacek, general manager of Tourists; and Cheryl Adams, a WUPE.FM DJ.

Winner of the "Only in North Adams" contest was Wigwam Western Summit.

Chowder cook-off competitors also included the Berkshire Food Project, Berkshire Palate, Boston Sea Foods, The Capitol Restaurant, Gramercy Bistro, McCann Technical School Culinary Arts and Sweetwood of Williamstown.