Chilli work at Canalhouse birthday fiesta
Regulars and staff at the Canalhouse marked the pub’s sixth anniversary in style with Mexican food and drink, fancy dress and a chilli competition.
The dress code prompted Viva Zapata moustaches by the whisker full, margaritas and tequilas served by the suitably attired staff and loads of traditional … and completely made up … hot spicy dishes.
According to manager, Yvette Storey, the highlight of the early evening was the chilli competition – a Castle Rock pub event for the Betty Holmes Trophy. Betty, who is now 96, was among the first in the UK to realise that pub food should be more than a pickled egg and a bag of salt and vinegar crisps. And so, in 1976 she brought chilli, cottage pie, lasagne and other warming dishes to the grateful customers at Castle Rock’s first pub in Newark.
For the Canalhouse’s competition, there were 18 entries, all judicially assessed by a team which included Charlie Blomeley for Castle Rock, and Terry and Frances Lock, representing the public.
“They were extremely variable in style, taste and texture,” says Charlie. “And as the tasting was ‘blind’ with numbered dishes, we can’t be accused of bias in picking a colleague as winner. Well done Jez Hand and, of course, thanks to all the other competitors.