East Tosa’s Chili’n on the Avenue

Posted: September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Yesterday was East Tosa’s annual Chili’n on the Avenue event, featuring both a Bloody Mary competition and a Chili competition.

Once again, this event fell on the same day as the East Side’s Tomato Romp event and once again, we chose to attend the Tosa event even though there were only four different Bloody Marys in that competition, compared to 14 at the Romp.

Although there are a few things that could be improved, we really prefer the intimate neighborhood feel of the Chili’n event and how true each spot stays to the actual Bloody Mary served at their establishment.

The four entries in this year’s Chili’n event were:

North Avenue Grill

Cranky Al’s

Bel Air Cantina

Red Dot

We started at North Avenue Grill; this bloody was very spicy. It came with a slice of bacon and ghost pepper cheese. It had a good overall flavor, but was a little too spicy for our taste.

North Avenue Grill

Next, we moved on to Cranky Al’s. We had watched a segment on FOX 6 about this event and there, Cranky’s Bloody Mary was topped with a unique fixin’: Donuts! When we got our sample Bloody on Saturday, however, we bummed to find a very standard Bloody Mary. It tasted fine, but was nothing special. When we asked about the donuts, we were told this was just for TV. That was a bummer, but the bartender did give us a free donut anyway for our troubles. That earned this bonus points.

The third stop was Bel Air Cantina. They serve up a Bloody Mary made with Tequila, so it is really a Bloody Maria. It comes with a chaser of Lagunitas and is topped with an assortment of pickled veggies from the Tosa Farmer’s Market. While we gave them props for the chaser (the only place who offered one) and sourcing their fixin’s locally, we just couldn’t overcome the harsh bite of the tequila to rate this Bloody very highly.

Bel Air Cantina

The final stop was at Red Dot, the winner of last year’s event.  This Bloody Mary is already one of the tops in our book, so we knew going in, this was a frontrunner. And they did not let us down. We had to rightfully cast our vote for Red Dot’s Basil-Garlic Bloody Mary.

Red Dot

And the public agreed. Red Dot was named the 2014 Bloody Mary Champion for the second year in a row!

Like we said, we have come to like this event far more than the Tomato Romp for many reasons, but we do have a few more suggestions for the future, such as getting more bars & restaurants to participate in the event, making sure to announce the winners on social media on the day of the event so those who had to leave early are able to find out the results, and clear marketing on times of the event (one flyer we spotted said Chili started at 11am and another said 1pm). We would have preferred an overlap of the Bloody Mary and Chili Competitions.  You could definitely start the Bloody Marys at 10am and Chili at 11:30am and end both early in the afternoon. Just something to think about for future years, but overall, we enjoyed the event once again and can’t wait to return in 2015!





  1. mbarylski says:

    Red Dot’s Basil-Garlic infused bloody is by far and away one of my favorites as of late. 4th Base’s bloody is top knotch as well.

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