Friday, June 17, 2011

Stand Up for the New Reigning Hot Dog Champions

On Monday, June 6th, I had the pleasure of attending the Fourth Annual Hot Dog Eating Contest, a charity event organized to raise money for The Friends of The FCI Award. There was certainly some very lively competition between the contestants. Students raced to finish a single two-and-a-half-foot-long hot dog, and the faculty was tasked with putting away as many regular size dogs as they could in three minutes.

I had never been to an event like this, but eating competitions are really something everyone should experience, even if just once. The room was packed with a sizable crowd, all yelling and cheering while the hot dogs were being eaten—myself included. Not that consumption rate is necessarily correlated with the loudness of the crowd, but I wanted to believe that we could actually help them eat faster if we were just a little louder.

The staff champion, Chef Dave Oland (pictured above, center), from Chicago, took home a prize of three vacation days after downing 13 hot dogs in three minutes.

Winning strategy?
"Come in and beat Erik Murninghan, and raise money for the cause."

Favorite thing about hot dogs?

Best hot dog memory?
"this one"

In the student division, Dan Esposito (pictured above) placed first, finishing all two-and-a-half-feet of hot dog before any of his classmates. He was handsomely rewarded with a stack of coupons to various restaurants around the city and a trophy made entirely out of sugar. It was a pretty heavy trophy.

His winning strategy?
"Apparently, make a mess, and eat faster than everyone else. If it weren’t for a good cause, I’d be very, very ashamed of myself."

Favorite thing about hot dogs?
"I think that a hot dog is a fun food. I wouldn’t feel the same way about eating 30 legs of duck confit, or a bucket of foie gras."

Best hot dog memory?
"This one, or Nathan’s 4th of July Hot Dog Eating Contest. Unless I'd been there, I wouldn’t believe that people could get so excited about eating pork by-product."

I screamed myself hoarse from all the excitement and went home with a sore throat. I was also waiting to see if anyone would have trouble keeping it all down, but everyone took it like a champ. And, the best part? Raising money for a good cause while having a blast.

Grace Ports is a Classic Culinary Arts student graduating in February 2012. She hopes to expose more people to Cantonese cuisine and help bring family dinner back into people's homes. She has a food blog at Her favorite hot dog was eaten at Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur in Reykjavik, Iceland.

1 comment:

mamaports said...

Very well done, Grace! I wanted the blog to continue on... Makes me look forward to more of your writing and photos :) Effective interview component, too!
love'n'hugs, mamamports