Words and images ©Chris Roberts/WiderViewPhoto
The Robert Dover’s Olimpick Games committee have scheduled a series of events as fundraisers for the Cotswold Olimpicks 2019.
The latest of these was the Noel Beer Fest and the 2nd Chipping Campden Chilli Eating Competition.
The Noel Beer Fest took place in the Dover’s bar at the Noel Arms Hotel in Chipping Campden and featured three beers from Gloucestershire brewer Clavell & Hind. These were Coachman a powerful light golden ale (3.8% Alc. Vol.), Blunder Buss an explosive pale ale (4.2% Alc. Vol.) and Wood Rock an irresistibly smooth ruby ale (4.4% Alc Vol.).
James Dobson from Clavell & Hind was on hand to serve the beers, two of which had been donated for the Cotswold Olimpicks fundraising.
Clavell & Hind have been providing these beers for 3-4 months to hotel manager Karl Diggins. These went down a treat with the supporters of the games with lots of money raised. The hotel was holding a curry evening at the same time at this popular venue in Chipping Campden and had over 100 diners.
Next up was the Chipping Campden Chilli Eating Competition which took place outside Toke’s Food & Drink shop, run by William Bennett, who is also vice-chair of the Olimpick games committee.
The event was started off in traditional style by newly appointed town crier Chris “Rooster” Rouse.
The competition was to find the winner to challenge the inaugural winner in 2017 Danny Walker.
The range of chilli’s available for the competition included Jalapeno,Yatsafusa (Birds Eye), Spaghetti, Aji Crystal, Filius Blue, Scotch Bonnet, Trinidad Scorpion Cardi, 7-Pot Yellow, Devil’s Rib, Bhut Jolokia (Ghost Pepper), Dorset Naga, 7-Pot Brain Strain and Carolina Reaper. These were mainly provided by Mike from Prices Spices, Leamington Spa as well as Tom Threadgill and Ben Bryan.
As Cotswold Olimpicks chair Tom Threadgill explained “I didn’t used to eat chilli’s until I started growing them. Your tolerance increases massively once you start eating them and the health benefits are immense. There’s some interesting information about Ed Currie (the guy who bred the Carolina Reaper chilli) and his motives. He came from a genetic line predisposed to cancer and heart problems, so he set about growing chillies after observing that societies which consume a lot of hot chilli have low instances of both diseases!”
The competition took the 14 contestants through a range of chilli’s starting with the mildest and going through to the hottest. The contestants ranged from schoolboys through to adult men and women.
The large crowd braved the very cold and wet weather and were able to buy a beer from Brotherhood Doers & Brewers (with Joe Lewis manning the bar), Antipodean Sommelier with a range of new Zealand and Australian wines (with Tony Wellings providing the advice), Ben Bryan and Annie Threadgill (selling their chilli’s and sauces) as well as taking part in the apple bobbing game run by local schoolboys Jack Gadsby, Jack Mackinnon and Casper Lewis.
Toke’s were also doing a roaring trade with people buying deli produce and wines, and coffee’s as well as keeping warm and dry!.
Entertainment was provided by Greg Brice with his blues-based guitar and vocals tunes.
The winner after 10 rounds was the UK “chilli Queen” Shahina Wassem, who was going for her 47th competition win, with last year’s winner Danny Walker the runner-up
The winner won £50 and the winner’s trophy as well as the kudos of being the Chipping Campden Chilli champion for 2018.
For a full set of images please visit my Flickr Album
The Robert Dover’s Cotswold Olimpicks committee will be manning a stall at the Christmas market in Chipping Campden on 1st December and will be happy to talk to potential volunteers.