The newest addition to Hollisterz Night Club and Café staff, Chef de Cuisine, Joseph Redovian earned former Detroit Red Wing Darren McCarty’s winning approval for this year’s chili cook-off.
Hollisterz was one of 16 local vendors who entered in the annual Chilly Fest event. “This wasn’t a people’s choice award,” said Chef Redovian, who handed out dozens of sample cups to the public. “It was Darren McCarty, he made the sole decision and it was winner-take-all.”
Darren McCarty said, “I love a meaty chili. I’m a meat guy, but two of these stood out. Number 4 and number 14, but number 14 was the best one.”
The day before the cook-off, Hollisterz completed its grand opening for the café.
One day, officially open for dining and the following day they are recognized for having the best chili in town. “This is my best chili,” said Redovian, “but there is no such thing as the best chili, you like what you like. I knew we had a shot but everyone prefers different meats, or beans. Chili is the hardest competition to win, in my opinion.”
As for creating the winning chili, Chef Redovian said, “It is a personal recipe of mine plus some tweaking.” The meat, which captured McCarty’s personal taste, Chef Redovian went on record to say with a smile, “well, I’d like to keep that secret; it’s a type of steak.”
Chef Redovian also has a history of placing in competitions. When asked by Hollisterz owner Shari Blackburn to participate in the cook-off, Redovian said, “I will put you on the map.” He has earned multiple ribbons both for the food type and for presentation, in previous competitions.
Not only did Hollisterz take home the pined-after trophy, by winning the competition they also have won exclusive food vendor rights to the concessions for the second half of Chilly Fest, February 4-6. You can expect more of Chef Redovian’s winning creations in the warming tent this year, which is free to enter, while enjoying the snowmobile races.
What else is in store for Hollisterz? Not only can you enjoy their wares at the snowmobile races next weekend at Desmond Landing, you may want to check out the band they are bringing into their establishment for evening entertainment. Cowboy Alan, as seen on MTV and noted for their most recent video, “Bull Riding Babe,” is in the house, as is the mechanical bull.
Rachel Olivia Kobylas