Cincinnati Chili

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jokadrma
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Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 10:04 AM
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Hey!

I'm leaving for Cincinnati tomorrow ... and I need recommendations for a great chili dive. I've read all the reviews on the site, but I need the lowdown for a one-stop shopper. Which one should I choose? I've already eliminated Skyline and Gold Star because I don't want to eat at a chain. I want the best heaping plate of chili, provided it's the only stop I'll be able to make ...

Camp Washington?
Price Hill?
Blue Ash?

Thanks for any help...
Josh

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 11:27 AM
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I prefer Blue Ash Chili, but the majority who eschew chains point to Camp Washington as the best

Camp Washington also has several other advantages

1) They are open 24 hours a day except a short closure Sunday - so you can get the fix any time of day
2) They are centrally located and right off I-75 - much easier to find and get to than Price Hill Chili or Blue Ash Chili, particularly for a visitor
3) They also serve the other two Cincinnati specialities you should also sample while you are there: goetta and double decker sandwiches

Either will be very good.

For proper\complete chili sampling, make sure you get one of each:
a chili spaghetti plate (3 way, 4 way, or 5 way - whatever seems most appealing)
a cheese coney - make sure you specify whether you want onions and/or mustard, or assumptions will be made and you'll get both
a cup of plain unadorned chili

jokadrma
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 2:29 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by TJ Jackson

I prefer Blue Ash Chili, but the majority who eschew chains point to Camp Washington as the best

Camp Washington also has several other advantages

1) They are open 24 hours a day except a short closure Sunday - so you can get the fix any time of day
2) They are centrally located and right off I-75 - much easier to find and get to than Price Hill Chili or Blue Ash Chili, particularly for a visitor
3) They also serve the other two Cincinnati specialities you should also sample while you are there: goetta and double decker sandwiches

Either will be very good.

For proper\complete chili sampling, make sure you get one of each:
a chili spaghetti plate (3 way, 4 way, or 5 way - whatever seems most appealing)
a cheese coney - make sure you specify whether you want onions and/or mustard, or assumptions will be made and you'll get both
a cup of plain unadorned chili

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 2:37 PM
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Enjoy....

mayor al
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 2:39 PM
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Josh,
TJ's recommendations are 'Right On the Nose' !! If you take his advice I can promise you a good Cincinnati Chili Experience! Enjoy !!

jokadrma
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 3:04 PM
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Thanks to the both of you ... I'll let you know how it goes!
Josh

marky
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 03/24/06 3:23 PM
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camp washington is awesome. usa declared it the best chilihouse in america years ago and i traveled alot in the 80s so there i would be sitting at the counter in chili 5 way heaven.

Sundancer7
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sat, 03/25/06 12:44 PM
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Although Gold Star Chili is not the best of Cincy, it is located in the B concourse in the Cincy airport and is very handy when I travel through.

I always get their three way along with one of their short dogs. Makes a very handy snack.

They also have a nice container to get a six pack of their chili. I bought one, brought it home, made my own version of three way and enjoyed a snowy evening.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN

jokadrma
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 03/28/06 10:24 AM
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Back from the trip to Cincinnati ... through planning we hit Camp Washington first. Then because of location/time we also squeezed in Gold Star and Skyline.

Much as it pains me to endorse a chili chain, I must say that Skyline was above and beyond the best of the three. We opened up the MainStrasse location after Sunday Service at the Covington Basilica. Can anyone tell me that spice that you can distinctly taste in most Cincinnati chili's? It's hard to describe, but very distinct and somewhat sweet. Whatever it was, it was more pronounced at Skyline than anywhere else. What Camp Washington DID have going for it, in my opinion, was that it was the hottest of the three.

I will concede that Camp Washington may have suffered a bit because they packed our order to go when we were eating in-house, so a plate of 4-way with beans was jammed into a styrofoam cup with very little noodles to speak of. But I also tried a roast-beef double decker there that was delicious. Gold Star was a very distant third.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 03/28/06 10:34 AM
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Glad to hear of it :-)

I guarentee your experience at Camp Washington would have been much improved had you eaten on dishes.

Did you also get a coney? Plain chili? what about the goetta?

I can't tell you the spice mix - it is a carefuly guarded secret, one wo which I am not privy :-). Typically guesses include (but are not limited to) cinamon, nutmeg, cocoa/chocolate, and/or allspice.

jokadrma
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 03/28/06 11:52 AM
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That's what I figured ... that it would have been much better with a plate. The upside was they include one too many cheese coneys so I had to eat 2 instead of 1. Bummer. So yep, I did get the chili (4-way and plain w/beans), the cheese coney, a double-decker sandwich and we did split some chili cheese fries also. I knew I forgot something, however, and didn't get to try the goetta. Oh well, I have decided I'll be back!

At Skyline I got a 4-way also and a cheese coney. I was amazed at how quickly a small 4-way and cheese coney filled me up. At Gold-star, I just got a small cup of chili w/beans to go.

Next time I'll pencil in Blue-Ash. I really need to nail whatever that particular spice was, that is what sealed the deal for me at Skyline.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 03/28/06 11:55 AM
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Well, at least you can buy the spice packets locally, or order them shipped via the mail

Blower
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Wed, 04/5/06 8:05 PM
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Going for my first taste tomorrow, cant wait to see what all the hubub is about...5-way here I come...

jjjrfoodie
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 04/6/06 4:19 PM
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You will not be disappointed.

startrooper00
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 04/6/06 6:38 PM
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Enjoy your first 'taste' and let us know what you think?

Ort. Carlton.
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 04/6/06 8:06 PM
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Dearfolk,
Y'all making me HONGRY!
Wishing I Could Go(etta) Right Now, Ort. Carlton in Livermushean (But Ya Gotta Know Where To Look!) Athens, Georgia.
P. S. I'm not trying to start a scrap(ple), but my favorite is Park Chili on Hamilton Avenue... AFTER Camp Washington, of course.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 04/6/06 10:46 PM
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Now now Ort - you do have the scrambled dog down there to tide you over, right?

Ort. Carlton.
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sat, 04/8/06 5:43 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by TJ Jackson
Now now Ort - you do have the scrambled dog down there to tide you over, right?


TJ,
For that one has to venture to Columbus, about 175 miles from here. I will be up for the trip shortly; I have a brewpub there (The Cannon Brewpub on Broadway) to review while I'm at it. I might as well grab a scrambled dog (at The Dinglewood Pharmacy first, natch) while I'm there... or two... or seven.
Then I motor to Auburn, Alabama to sample the libations at The Olde Auburn Ale House downtown. On the way, I'll eat a plate of BBQ at a recommended-to-me place in Phenix City and drive by WCLS radio's directional towers.
Ah, me -- so many things to eat, so many to drink....
Wistfully (Full Of Wists?), Ort. Carlton in 30601-land.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sat, 04/8/06 6:35 PM
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So the scrambled dog is ONLY in Columbus, GA? I had thought it was a all-Georgia thing.

I have a friend working in a Military hospital there in Columbus

Ort. Carlton.
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Mon, 04/10/06 10:10 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by TJ Jackson
So the scrambled dog is ONLY in Columbus, GA? I had thought it was a all-Georgia thing.


TJ,
Absolutely not! It was begun at a long-vanished place named Firm Roberts' Cafe on Old Cusseta Road sometime around 1926 (somebody in the kitchen probably got bored one night and concocted it). After a few years, the fame of the dish made Roberts' eatery locally famous.
One of the kitchen workers, a man named Lieutenant Stevens, memorized the recipe in the early 1940's with the ultimate intent of figuring out ways to improve it. When Firm Roberts' closed, he took a job at another place, and following several successive transfers, he prepared his now-improved scrambled dogs at the luncheonette of the amazingly-named Dinglewood Pharmacy on Wynnton Road in Columbus for around 40 years. He's retired now, but he still comes in periodically "to stir the chili," as he puts it, around peak lunchtime.
Purists of the dish advise me that you eat your first one at Dinglewood (especially if you can get Mr. Stevens to make it for you, which isn't difficult), then venture elsewhere to see how the other places do it. Country's BBQ on Broad Street downtown makes a credible version, but there are at least two or three dozen other places that produce the dish. It hasn't travelled any farther than Phenix City, Opelika, and Auburn, Alabama that I am aware of, although there is a long-established hot doggery in downtown La Grange, Georgia that might serve a version: Charlie Joseph's; 128 Bull Street. (They also have one suburban location.)
This is, indeed, a ways off the initial Cincinnati chili topic, o moderator, but it answers TJ's implied question as well as I am able.
Doggedly Submitted, Ort. Carlton in Already-Scrambled Athens, Georgia.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Mon, 04/10/06 10:49 PM
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Thankee Ort!

Blower
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 04/18/06 5:28 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by startrooper00

Enjoy your first 'taste' and let us know what you think?



Not bad at all. Went to Camp Washington and got the 5-way and some chili cheese fries decided to eat it there for the ambiance.
It Definiteley different from the "normal" chili I'm used to but it was good. When it came out it looked just like the picture heaping high and quite beatiful looking loaded with cheese, finely diced onions and beans. After carefully digging through the cheese layer I found the chili quite pleasant tasting. Chili cheese fries were outstanding, found the fries to be crisp and the chili and cheese plentiful. Tried with and without the hot sauce and I do like my food spicey but not sure about the vinegar franks style hot sauce (which I like) on the chili I think some red pepper flakes would have done better to add heat while preserving the taste. Don't know if I'll be making the 300 mile ride for some but I wouldn't turn down going there again if we were going by the place.

I now know what jokadrma is talking about it almost tastes like a hint of allspice or something close to that in the chili.

Would have done the coney too but I was still stuffed from breakfast :)


Pdasilva0324
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sun, 04/30/06 3:54 PM
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Cincinnati style chili is one of the worst culinary concoctions I have ever laid eyes, nose, or tongue on. Ginger? In chili? It's supposed to be sweet? YYUUCCKKK..it tastes like Crest toothpaste with a hint of onions. Adding some spaghetti or noodles certainly doesn't help matters and gives pasta a bad name.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sun, 04/30/06 4:05 PM
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Tell us how you REALLY feel, Pd

For many, it is an acquired taste. One that a very high percentage of Cincinnatians have acquired.

Sorry about your luck.

Can somebody send this person some lutefisk? :-)

Blower
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 05/2/06 5:36 PM
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I agree, its aquired.

When I cook spaghetti at home it al dente and the sauce is homemade (I make gallons of sauce every year with cases of farmers market tomatos) just like its supposed to be. Luckily, I have that occasional craving for overcooked spaghetti with the canned sauce and fake cheese. Sometimes you just gotta slum it and feed your inner child. haha

So, I ended up taking to cincinnati chili like a fish to water. When I first had it I thought it was ok, but witin a week or 2 I started craving it. I ended up making my own(used dried beans slow cooked and a pinch of allspice, pinch of sugar, unsweeted coco powder and intenionally overcooked the noodles), man it was good and pretty darn close to the real deal(BTW a sharper cheddar works well on top).

Sundancer7
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 05/2/06 6:03 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Pdasilva0324

Cincinnati style chili is one of the worst culinary concoctions I have ever laid eyes, nose, or tongue on. Ginger? In chili? It's supposed to be sweet? YYUUCCKKK..it tastes like Crest toothpaste with a hint of onions. Adding some spaghetti or noodles certainly doesn't help matters and gives pasta a bad name.


It is important that you add in your opinion!!!

You may not enjoy Cincy Chili and that is your opinion and I respect that but not all folks agree with your taste. Everything is a matter of taste.

Quite frankly many of the people enjoy this chili. I am one of them but again, it is my opinion.

I suggest that you post what is your personal opinion. We may not enjoy what you enjoy but we will never know unless you present it in a more paltable way.

Thanks
Paul E. smith
Knoxville, TN

V960
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 05/2/06 6:36 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Pdasilva0324

Cincinnati style chili is one of the worst culinary concoctions I have ever laid eyes, nose, or tongue on. Ginger? In chili? It's supposed to be sweet? YYUUCCKKK..it tastes like Crest toothpaste with a hint of onions. Adding some spaghetti or noodles certainly doesn't help matters and gives pasta a bad name.


It's cinnamon you taste not ginger. You have a palate that matches your manners.

CasperImproved
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 05/2/06 6:59 PM
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Pdasilva0324 - Any sauce (even chili related) that has gained respect from a large number of people, must be worthy of contemplation... if you personally would not consider eating this as chili, consider (with imagination) what it *might* be good on. That's what being a good cook/chef/appreciator/etc. would do. If you can't think of something you might try it on based on ingredients and/or cook method, rack it up to different strokes for different folks... personnally, I prefer my pork ribs with a glaze or BBQ sauce, but I don't poke at people that like their's dry...

Go with the flow and appreciate the differences in those around you. Diversity is a good thing... else you might only like gruel.

Casper

Pat T Hat
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 05/2/06 10:16 PM
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Oh let us not forget the original "Empress Chili"! Their beans are the best I think and the chili is nothing less than top drawer. Still just a small family operation. I love "The Camp", Price Hill is good but ya know I just plain love chili! Raised on the Cincy stuff and we just use it for the Greek meat gravy it is. Try it on eggs or as a "Way" Omelette. The cinnamon is what everybody thinks of, but the real measure to it's "Cincyness" is the use of allspice and clove. In the proper proportions it's what gives it that extra kick. I think it really brings out the red pepper chili's that the best places put in whole(At Camp Washington I've never gotten a pint without at least one floating around).

Pigiron
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Wed, 05/3/06 10:49 AM
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Man, I LOVE Camp Washington. I can't get decent chili of ANY kind around my parts, with the exception of my own Veggie Chili. Camp Washington really has a unique flavor, and the new location (maybe it's not so new anymore?) is very spiffy and clean. Enjoy!

Hamburgler
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 05/12/06 12:35 PM
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I've eaten at Empress Chili before. That was before they closed down that location, though. It was pretty good. Dixie Chili used to be good until they started using extremely small hotdogs. Their chili doesn't taste the same as it used to. Dixie used to be my favorite, though.

I've seen the two chili joints off the Hopple Street exit off of 75. I think one is called U.S. Chili or something. I've never been to either of them, though. I've never had Camp Washington Chili either.

What I really need is a footlong from Gold Star Chili. I think they will start selling them this summer. Anyway, they should make those things year round. I know I'd probably eat there more often if they did.

My mouth is starting to water thinking about this stuff. Gotta love Cincinnati!


SassyGritsAL
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Mon, 05/15/06 4:47 PM
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I get to visit KY/OH a few times (relatives live there), and the first thing I do is get my Cincy-chili fix. I love it! I crave it! I dream about it!. Wish we had one here in Huntsville, AL.

Michael Hoffman
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Wed, 01/10/07 8:26 PM
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Mr. or Ms. thefluffyturtle, you have taken an article by Cliff Lowe and presented it here as your own work. Mr. Lowe, should he discover this, might well want to take the owners of this website to court for violation of federal copyright law. What you have done is known as plagiarism.

porkbeaks
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Wed, 01/10/07 9:59 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Michael Hoffman

Mr. or Ms. thefluffyturtle, you have taken an article by Cliff Lowe and presented it here as your own work. Mr. Lowe, should he discover this, might well want to take the owners of this website to court for violation of federal copyright law. What you have done is known as plagiarism.


Horror! The horror!! (all due credit to Marlon Brando)

thefluffyturtle
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 3:38 AM
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MR MICHAEL HOFFMAN,

Not done intentially, nor did I say it was mine. I have corrected the error.

Oh...and thanks for such a warm welcome!

FLUFFY

thefluffyturtle
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 3:40 AM
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Al,

No, no relation...just a fellow foodie like the rest of you. I'm a "she" by the way...Nice to meet you though. What I've read of your
posts, I really enjoy!

Fluffy

PapaJoe8
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 10:19 AM
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Fluffy, welcome to roadfood! Thanks so much for your post. One question, I hear some Cinci recipes use celery. What do you think about this adition?
Joe

Michael Hoffman
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 10:53 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by thefluffyturtle

MR MICHAEL HOFFMAN,

Not done intentially, nor did I say it was mine. I have corrected the error.

Oh...and thanks for such a warm welcome!

FLUFFY


You are quite welcome.

FYI: It still violates federal copyright law. As a general rule of thumb, the publication (and posting is publication) of more than 10 percent, or 500 words, whichever is the least, of any copyrighted work without the express permission of the copyright holder is a violation.

Now, it is highly unlikely that you, or anyone who actually posts in violation will end up being sued. However, it is not at all uncommon for the owner of a website to be on the receiving end of a lawsuit.

The best way to avoid such a problem is to post a short exerpt, along with the URL for the entire piece.

I offer this information out of the goodness of my heart, and as someone who has been forced to successfully take action against a few folks who violated my copyrights.

Oh, and welcome to Roadfood.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 11:36 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by PapaJoe8

Fluffy, welcome to roadfood! Thanks so much for your post. One question, I hear some Cinci recipes use celery. What do you think about this adition?

I realize this was not addressed to me, but as a Cincinnatian, I can say that most of my fellow city residents would cringe at the idea of celery being an ingredient in Cincinnati-style chili.

That said....

A minute amount of celery salt, maybe

A small amount in a vegetarian\vegan version, certainly

On the matter of copied material: the opening post, when I read it, had no mention of an authors name, no citation, no "from:" link provided. Ergo, by inference, one is led to believe the material is the post author's own words -- not because the poster said specifically it was his\her own words, but rather by the fact that the poster did not in some manner convey that these were not his/her own words.

I won't address this matter further, even if egged on. :-) I will say that I hope we return to the topic: cincinnati chili.

PapaJoe8
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 12:35 PM
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Thanks TJ! Celery salt, would that make it Chicago style, like the dog. I guess you would need a pickle though. Hmm, what would you call a Chicago style dog with cinci chili on top? :~)

I just did a google for;

cincinnate chili celery

Lot's of recipes using celery. I was not able to find details of any restaurant that used it though. There was even a meat cinci chili recipe somewhere here at roadfood that called for celery.
Joe

Fieldthistle
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 1:09 PM
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Hello All,
I made a cinci-style chili from a recipe I found.
It was just too hard for my mind to enjoy chili
with spaghetti.
I think I need to go to Cincinnati and get the real thing.
Sometimes you need to experience what the experts make
before you can understand what you're trying to re-create.
PapaJoe8, I think celery in chili is great.
Also PapJoe8, the e-mail problem is strange. I sent you a couple,
including a New Year's card, which I'm not sure you got. Will
try to e-mail you again, my friend.
Take Care,
Fieldthistle

PapaJoe8
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 2:06 PM
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Field, I have eatin a more Texas style chili sketty since I was a kid. First the chili, then cheddar cheese, now the chili, usually Wolf Brand when I was a kid. The hot chili on top melts the cheese. Cut it with a fork so you get the right amounts of stuff in each bite. Now days I might use homemade chili, or any brand of canned chili. Then I top with chopped onions and nacho sliced pickled jalapenos.

From my childhood memories of eating Shanghai Jimmy's Chili Rice, I have added chopped celery as a topping to that dish. I have yet to actually cook celery in chili. The idea of doing so came from reading many recipes for Cinci chili that used celery.

Also Field, your emails my have gotten lost in the thousands of spam mail I got during the holidays, very sorry!
Joe

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 01/11/07 4:25 PM
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*shrug* I very much doubt any commercial chili producer or any restauranteur includes any celery in their Cincinnati-style Chili product.



PapaJoe8
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 01/12/07 12:09 PM
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I am not saying you are wrong TJ. Unless someone knows otherwise I am convinced that you are right. The weird thing is that there are so many recipes floating around, for Cinci chili, that call for celery.

I do know for sure tha Shanghai Jimmy offered celery, as an optional topping, at his Chili Rice restaurants in Texas.
Joe

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 01/12/07 12:11 PM
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Understood, Papajoe....and no problem.

CajunKing
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 01/12/07 3:43 PM
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Not truly "chili" but Cincy style chili related

Donato's Pizza here in the Cincinnati area for a limited time has a Cincy style chili pizza.

Instead of the tomato sauce they use Cincy style chili.

It was interesting, verrrrrrrrrry innnnterestingk.

TJ Jackson
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Fri, 01/12/07 3:49 PM
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Many Dominos once locally offerred, a long, long time ago, a "Sky Pie" - domino's crust and cheese, skyline chili replacing the sauce.

I don't think it was advertised, ie I don't think that Skyline had, err, approved or authorized the product.

Josquin
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sat, 04/21/07 3:52 PM
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Greetings, all. Never posted before, but this topic is worth registering to weigh in on. I'm in Minnesota now, but spent ten years in Cincinnati, and there is little more dear to my heart than Cincinnati chili. By default, I'm a Skyline fan, but only because there's a Skyline every 150 yards pretty much everywhere in town. There are two reasons I believe they are superior to Goldstar: 1. They use a thinner noodle. 2. They are less likely to stew said noodles into oblivion.

Regarding the celery question, my gut reaction is "no way." But I suppose anything is possible. Online recipes are almost never an accurate guide. For example, almost every one I've seen includes chopped onion, which is just no-way, no-how, present in the real thing. That's one of the reasons I love it.

Anyway, if you want to make it yourself, the best recipe I've found is at beergeek.com. I should probably mention that I am in no way affiliated with the site. Batch #13 is still the way to go, if you stop by.

Whew. That's it. Thanks for listening.

Jos

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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sat, 04/21/07 7:12 PM
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Welcome Jos to Roadfood! Compared to many, I'm a newcomer, hope you find your visits as pleasant as I have. Good folks hang out around here. Thanks for your well stated opinion regarding Chili. I find this topic of great interest. Various parts of our great country prepare this delicacy in different ways. My taste buds welcome ALL the variations!
Pleased you've joined us.

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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Mon, 04/30/07 4:38 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by rouxdog

Welcome Jos to Roadfood! Compared to many, I'm a newcomer, hope you find your visits as pleasant as I have. Good folks hang out around here. Thanks for your well stated opinion regarding Chili. I find this topic of great interest. Various parts of our great country prepare this delicacy in different ways. My taste buds welcome ALL the variations!
Pleased you've joined us.

JAKE91
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Mon, 04/30/07 4:42 PM
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The best way to make the Cincy Spaghetti is to just make sure you don't 'OVERCOOK' the spaghetti. As a matter of fact, you should undercook it a bit, once that chili hits it, it is just the right texture to eat.

phil king
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Mon, 04/30/07 4:55 PM
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There is a Skyline Chile on west 86th Street in Indianapolis. Whenever I'm passing through Indy I make a point of stopping and doing their 3-way....along with a Chili dog, of course.....good eating!!!!

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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Tue, 05/8/07 10:25 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by jokadrma

. . . Can anyone tell me that spice that you can distinctly taste in most Cincinnati chili's? It's hard to describe, but very distinct and somewhat sweet. Whatever it was, it was more pronounced at Skyline than anywhere else. . . .

I stopped at a Skyline when I passed thru Columbus (OH, not GA) a couple of weeks ago. Speaking as someone who grew up in Albuquerque, the very idea of chile served with pasta had to be some kind of abomination. I think that I was probably about sixteen before I even had any Texas style red chile. Proper new Mexico chile is always made with pork and a GREEN chile called Anaheim or NuMex, that ranges from relatively mild to medium-hot, and we call it chile verde. But, I digress.

I tried the Skyline and liked it a lot. Liked the chile. Liked the cheese. Liked the chopped onions. The spaghetti?? Best I can say is, I guess it's okay. I took a quart of plain ("one-way??") chile with sides of onion and cheese to go and had it for breakfast the next day in Iowa. Good thing that I was travelling alone. I'll try some other places the next time that I'm in Ohio.
But, I think that the flavor that you notice is from what is called "Chinese five-spice powder."
I guess we all think that what we grow up with is normal. My Mom always made chile verde with potatoes--usually small red potatoes just quartered. Years later, I tried making Texas style red chile with potatoes. That just didn't work.
dahl

BTW, my Mom was Mexican, my Dad Norwegian. That made for some interesting food, growing up.

soozycue520
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Wed, 05/9/07 12:21 AM
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Dahl,

Cincinnati chili is really "greek style meat sauce". To most, it is an acquired taste. What I basically tell people, when eating Cincinnati style chili, is to have an open mind. Don't think of "Texas chili {chile}", red or green chile. It is more sweet than hot. It has nothing to do with "chile".

Your guess that "Chinese five-spice powder", is involved, is not that far off. All of the five flavors - sour, bitter, sweet, pungent, and salty are found in Cincinnati chili, as well.

The Skyline chili recipe, is, of course, a closely guarded secret, but some people detect a hint of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, or allspice, as well as cumin, chocolate, vinegar, etc. It seems to be a "bastardized" version of stifado ~~

.http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,1727,158187-232207,00.html

I guess, since I grew up with it, I am just accustomed to it. I love a chili cheese sandwich {no hot dog}, with mustard and extra onion!!

dadetigl
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 05/10/07 10:28 PM
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This may be a stretch, but does anyone know if Cretins Chili (love the name) in Elmwood Place is still around? We went there every once in a while back in the late '60's. There weren't a lot of chili parlors back then and we usually hit the Skyline on Clifton Ave. or White Castle after spending time at the UC nightclubs. Don't remember anymore if it was great or not, but it was one of those old-time hole-in-the-wall places that was cool and the chains probably eventually put out of business. It was a big hit back then with the P&G Ivorydale lunch crowd including my Dad. All those years growing up in Cincy, he never gave any indication that he liked the stuff until he retired to South Carolina and found out I could get frozen Skyline at our FL Winn-Dixie. We always had to bring some on our visits. Go figure.
Well, Elmwood Place looked ancient back then and Ivorydale is no longer. Anyone remember Cretins?

ChopChop
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 05/10/07 10:48 PM
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My mother made a great Cincinnati style chili. Here's the recipe:


1 lb ground chuck
1 medium onion, chopped
1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp allspice
pinch of cayenne
pinch of cinnamon
pinch of cloves
pinch of mace
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp chipotle powder
2 T chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 small can tomato sauce
1 cup beef broth
2 tsp red wine vinegar
3 dashes Tabasco
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Brown ground chuck and onions. Saute minced garlic with beef/onion for about 1 min during final stage of browning meat. Add dry spices and saute about 1 minute or until aromatic. Add bay leaf with liquid or wet ingredients and simmer chili for about 1 hour. Mixture should be very meaty and thick enough to spoon over baked potato or cooked spaghetti.

If you want to add more beef broth or another can of tomatoes and/or a can of chili beans, this can make a soupier dish which I think I would like as well.


No celery at all!


robroy
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sat, 05/12/07 11:46 PM
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I used to not care for Cincinnati chili because I always thought it was a bit on the sweetish site. Then one day I had a really excellent bowl in a chili joint. I decided to try making it at home and I came across a recipe in a book "The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American". I was able to get it to taste very close to what I had at that chili joint. The unusual spices are allspice, cinnamon, bay leaves, and cocoa powder & they make the dish very interesting in a good way. Tabasco in the recipe gives it some respectable heat but not so much that it becomes a challenge to eat.

I do two things which make it better for my taste:

1) After the chili has been cooking in a crock pot for awhile, I move it to a food processor & buzz it a few times before setting it back in the pot for more simmering. For me, this greatly improves the texture by breaking up any large snappy pieces - l like it fine textured. Just take out the bay leaves before processing...

2) The idea of adding the beans to the chili right before serving is great idea that any chili recipe would benefit from. Cooking the beans separately in unsalted water avoids the hard skin that beans sometime get (it's salt that can contribute to the formation of that hard skin).

I don't do the spaghetti thing - Purists, please forgive me, I'm from Jersey where we grew up knowing spaghetti as Italian food. I especially love this chili with Fritos and finely shredded cheddar cheese on top. I served it once to native Texans and they were quite pleased (they were however quite adamant that the Fritos should go on the BOTTOM). Also made it once for our summer block party & it was it was completely devoured - I mean the crock pot was licked clean. No one knew they were eating Cincinnati chili, they just plain enjoyed it. That's why it's a great style of chili. Doesn't require so much of an acquired taste as it does an open mind.

Foodbme
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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Sun, 05/13/07 1:59 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by Josquin

Greetings, all. Never posted before, but this topic is worth registering to weigh in on. I'm in Minnesota now, but spent ten years in Cincinnati, and there is little more dear to my heart than Cincinnati chili. By default, I'm a Skyline fan, but only because there's a Skyline every 150 yards pretty much everywhere in town. There are two reasons I believe they are superior to Goldstar: 1. They use a thinner noodle. 2. They are less likely to stew said noodles into oblivion.

Regarding the celery question, my gut reaction is "no way." But I suppose anything is possible. Online recipes are almost never an accurate guide. For example, almost every one I've seen includes chopped onion, which is just no-way, no-how, present in the real thing. That's one of the reasons I love it.

Anyway, if you want to make it yourself, the best recipe I've found is at beergeek.com. I should probably mention that I am in no way affiliated with the site. Batch #13 is still the way to go, if you stop by.

Whew. That's it. Thanks for listening.

Jos


I put Celery in my "Regular" Chili, but Celery in Cincinnati Chili??? NO WAY JOSE'. Putting Celery in Cincinnati Chili is like putting whipped cream on a pickle[|)][|)]

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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 05/31/07 12:39 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Josquin

Greetings, all. Never posted before, but this topic is worth registering to weigh in on. I'm in Minnesota now, but spent ten years in Cincinnati, and there is little more dear to my heart than Cincinnati chili. By default, I'm a Skyline fan, but only because there's a Skyline every 150 yards pretty much everywhere in town. There are two reasons I believe they are superior to Goldstar: 1. They use a thinner noodle. 2. They are less likely to stew said noodles into oblivion.

Regarding the celery question, my gut reaction is "no way." But I suppose anything is possible. Online recipes are almost never an accurate guide. For example, almost every one I've seen includes chopped onion, which is just no-way, no-how, present in the real thing. That's one of the reasons I love it.

Anyway, if you want to make it yourself, the best recipe I've found is at beergeek.com. I should probably mention that I am in no way affiliated with the site. Batch #13 is still the way to go, if you stop by.

Whew. That's it. Thanks for listening.

Jos

I finally got around to trying Cincinnati chili and used the recipe recommended in this post, Batch #13 at beergeek.com. I followed it to the letter and the unanimous opinion of my family (6 adults who all love chili) was that it sucked.....BigTime! If the chili purists have a hard time with a recipe that contains beans they must go apoplectic over this abomination. Could be that you have to grow up eating it to have an appreciation or, somehow, develop a taste for it but, imho, there's no good reason to ever try it again. pb

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RE: Cincinnati Chili - Thu, 05/31/07 2:13 PM
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Wow, sorry, PB. I appreciate your opinion, though. And I certainly didn't mean to torture your family. There's no doubt about it, this is seriously weird food. I think things might go better if it wasn't called chili. Being a chili fan just doesn't seem to be relevant to whether or not you're going to like this stuff.

I'm not a lifer. I discovered it in college. Being somewhat vegephobic, I was thrilled to learn that there was chili I wouldn't have to spend time picking anything out of. I was immediately hooked.

I think the most curious thing about it is the love-hate reaction everyone seems to have. You don't hear, "It was all right." very often. Either it's ambrosia, or you wouldn't use it to punish prisoners.

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