I'm looking for a chili cookoff open to outsiders that is preferably not a professional, sanctioned event.
The reason being that I want to get my feet wet in a low pressure environmet, where I am not necessarily up against seasoned veterans of the chili wars.
Sanctioned events are so strict and they expect a very specific type of chili, too. Not that I can't and don't do something that would qualify but I have my own style which I'm not sure fits into the narrow window of what they look for. Plus, I want locals to try my chili and see if it is well accepted here. It has been gobled up at parties I've thrown. I know of two friendly competitions in the New Haven area and usually there's 10-20 participants. I'm not sure if I want to disclose those, myself, as I think I would stick out like a sore thumb and be immediately identifiable, if someone wanted to make the connection. I want to preserve what little CH anonimity I can (re, local restaurant people who frequent CH).
Anyone know of decent-sized cook-offs open to the public? Please, no church cookoffs, and the like, that are for members, and not advertised openly to the public. Thanks!