You like it hot? Mike’s Maze is the place for the annual Chilifest

The Recorder, September 14, 2017, by Andy Castillo

Kitchen Garden Farm will kick off the season with their annual Chilifest this weekend at Mike’s Maze. They intend to process 23,000 pounds of 45 pepper varieties this year.

A chili cook-off is scheduled Saturday, Sep. 16, followed by a hot sauce competition Sunday, Sep. 17.

Kitchen Garden Farm “is a 50-acre, certified organic vegetable farm” on South Silver Lane, “owned and operated by Tim Wilcox and Caroline Pam,” describes the farm’s website.

The cook-off will pit The Alvah Stone Chef David Schrier, who’s taken first place a few years in a row, “against rivals from Bistro Les Gras, Five Eyed Fox, Hope & Olive, The Harp Irish Pub, Local Burger, 30Boltwood and The Sierra Grille,” a statement posted online by the farm announces.

Chili tasting and a chance to vote will happen from noon to 3 p.m.

Sunday’s hot sauce competition features 22 sauces including “Slytherin Sauce,” “Peaches and Scream,” and “To the Grave.” Tasting and a following vote is open noon to 3 p.m.

In addition, there will be locally sourced “salads, shaved ice and ginger cookies from Old Friends Farm, chili dogs and fries from Simple Gifts Farm, grass-fed burgers from Chase Hill Farm, and tacos and grilled Mexican street corn from yours truly Kitchen Garden Farm! ” the statement continues.

That’s in addition to deserts from Crooked Stick Pops and Bart’s Ice Cream. Live music will be performed by Tang Sauce, Eli Catlin, Kimaya Diggs, Kate Lorenz, and others.

The fest will be held from noon to 5 p.m. both days. Mike’s Maze, hosting the event, is at Warner Farm, 23 South Main St., Sunderland. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children.

The maze’s hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. Additional entry fees apply to enter the maze, $14 for adults, $12 for seniors, students, and active military members. $11 for kids, and children under 4 years old are free.

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