chili fest toronto

Toronto is getting a chili and beer festival during lockdown

A chili and beer festival is here to save Toronto's food fest culture in a distanced way as restrictions tighten and lockdowns continue.

Indie Alehouse is spearheading the take-home chili fest that includes themselves, Beast, Liberty Commons, Hole in the Wall and Bar Hop.

A $65 to-go package for two includes 250mL portions of traditional or vegetarian chili from each restaurant, plus six Indie Ale House beers. Add on six more for 20 bucks, and add on an Indie hot sauce pack for an extra kick.

"We were planning a real chili fest this summer at our 215 Horner Ave. brewing factory space with a huge outdoor yard, but that never happened…. so in working on our plans for 2021 we kicked around this idea of having it virtually and spork with a few partners and here we are," Jason Fisher of Indie Ale House told blogTO.

"We chose to work with operators we know, we know will have fun and make a great product. Combine that with the fact January and February will very likely be super slow for everyone, customers included if they are following COVID directions…so doing this works from a business and timeline perspective as much as it does an event perspective."

You can compare your favourites with friends and judges and the winner gets bragging rights, but technically everyone wins by supporting local businesses.

"So far sales have been great, we need to give the partners a few days to be able to make all of this chili, so sales will get cut off this Sunday at the latest, sooner if we sell out ahead of time, but we think we have excess capacity at this time of year so we can keep sales open until Sunday," says Fisher.

Pick up your chili and beer at Indie Ale House on Jan. 14 and 15 for the challenge, which technically takes place on Jan. 16. I guess nothing is stopping you from giving into a spoonful early, but there will be celebrity judges and a livestream event, so it's going to be way more fun to follow along.

Lead photo by

Indie Ale House


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