O’Callahan’s Restaurant chef Bryan Wilson serves up his winning chowder. This was the first year O’Callahan’s has competed in the competition, and they were named winner for Judges’ Award and People’s Choice Award. Photo by Mindi LaRoes, KP News

O’Callahan’s wowed the crowd at the final Gig Harbor Farmers Market during the Chowder Cook-off, and came away with first place in both categories- Judges Award and the People’s Choice Award.

Owner Greg Calahan said a customer of the Key Peninsula Farmers Market, which was held in O’Callahan’s parking lot on Sunday afternoons from noon to 4 p.m.  May through September, asked him to enter the cook-off. Calahan decided to give it a try, he said.

“We make a good chowder,” Calahan said, “so we got together with them on the 26th and presented our product and served a bunch of people. We came out victorious.”

Though it is the ninth Chowder Cook-off for the Gig Harbor market, it was the first time Callahan’s had entered the contest.

“We were pretty proud of the whole thing, and it was really well organized and they did an excellent job of setting it up and making it a good time for everybody that was involved,” Calahan said.

The chowder was the same chowder that is served at the Key Center restaurant, and is chef Bryan Wilson’s secret recipe he has been working on for 20 years. “We went through about 10 gallons of chowder,” Calahan said.

The Key Peninsula was represented well at the cook-off. Roadhouse on the Hill threw their chowder ladle into the competition, though they didn’t place in the contest.

Winners were:
Judges Award
First Place: O’Callahan’s
Second Place: Tides Tavern
Third Place: Inn of Gig Harbor

People’s Choice Award

First Place: O’Callahan’s
Second Place: Inn of Gig Harbor
Third Place: Tides Tavern

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