North Country Chili Cook-off hitting the road

Chili tour

ADAMS, N.Y. (WWNY) - Pack your appetite and get the car keys. The North Country Chili Cook-off is hitting the road.

What could be better than a day dedicated to the meaty, beany goodness of locally made chili? How about a whole month?

This year’s annual North Country Chili Cook-Off takes tasters on a tour.

Getting involved is easy! Just get your appetite, get your mask, get your keys and drive.

There are plenty of restaurants new to the competition this year, like Gram’s Diner in Adams.

“We’ve always wanted to do it, but we’ve never had the resources to do it outside the restaurant. So we’re really excited to be able to participate this year,” said Kyle Hayes, diner owner.

So does a newbie have what it takes?

“We always think we’re gonna win. We have really great chili; we’ve used the recipe for years now,” said Hayes.

Next stop: Montague Inn, where the snowmobilers are cold, but the chili is hot.

“We’re confident in our chili, but we’re pretty sure we definitely have some good competition out there too,” said Steve Hennigan, inn manager.

At Mike’s Pig Pen in Watertown, the chili is like precious cargo.

“It’s a basic chili, it’s a real good chili, it’s a homemade chili,” said Mike Cornell, Mike’s Pig Pen owner.

But, can it rival that of Josh’s Riverside Restaurant in Croghan?

“We hope that you come out and try our chili. It’s really good and it’s always made with love here at the restaurant,” said Holly Lyndaker, restaurant server.

People can cast a vote for their favorite chili in person or online.

Even for restaurants who don’t get the most votes, they’re still winning.

“It gives people the opportunity to try different places that they might not have,” said Hayes.

Get out of your environment a little bit, get some fresh air and some good chili,” said Hennigan.

All proceeds benefit the Volunteer Transportation Center.

Here’s the full list of participating restaurants:

• Gram’s Diner, 13 Main Street, Adams

• Spook Hill Bar And Grill, 12139 U.S. Route 11, Adams Center

• The Dockside Pub, 17 Market Street, Alexandria Bay

• Sahara Restaurant, 39936 State Route 3, Carthage

• The Church Street Diner, 107 Church Street, Carthage

• Whistle Stop Tavern, 33926 State Route 3, Carthage

• Zero Dock Street Restaurant & Bar, 130 Canal Street, Carthage

• River Bottom Bar & Grill, 419 Riverside Drive, Clayton

• Whiskey Jack’s, 5454 Plumber Road, Constableville

• The Cottage Inn, 9794 State Route 12, Copenhagen

• Josh’s Riverside Restaurant, 681 State Route 812, Croghan

• Meme’s Diner, 31606 State Route 3, Felts Mills

• L.E.A.’S Diner, 90 State Street, Heuvelton

• Montague Inn, 6765 Sears Pond Road, Lowville

• Tony Harper’s Pizza & Clam Shack, 7617 North State Street, Lowville

• Boondocks Restaurant & Bar, 3950 State Route 12, Lyons Falls

• River Valley Inn, 6670 Burdicks Crossing Road, Lyons Falls

• Nu Pier Restaurant, 13212 State Route 3, Sackets Harbor

• The Cottage Bakery, 24360 County Route 57, Three Mile Bay

• Tavern230, 4173 West Road, Turin

• Flashback Brewing Company, 1309 State Street, Watertown

• Garland City Beer Works, 321 Howk Street, Watertown

• Mike’s Pig Pen, 18938 County Route 165, Watertown

• Panera Bread, 21872 Towne Center Drive, Watertown

• The Grille at Hilton Garden Inn, 1290 Arsenal Street, Watertown

• Pearl Street Pub, 557 Pearl Street, Watertown

• Pete’s Trattoria, 111 Breen Avenue, Watertown

• Tug Hill Hideaway, 1838 Fish Creek Road, West Leyden

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