15th Annual Chowder Challenge – Chowder & Jazz

Sonoma Mendocino Coast Whale and Jazz Festival presents

Jazz Concert & Chowder tasting, featuring Barnebey's Hot Four

Saturday, April 14, 2018, 11:30 am to 2:30 pm

Coleman Auditorium

$25 in advance, plus $5 day of (15 tasting tickets & commemorative glass). Free admission for music only.

Click here for Chowder Challenge application.


The Independent Coast Observor captured the fun of Gualala Arts 15th Annual Chowder Challenge featuring winner Anchor Bay Thai Kitchen!

Other Whale and Jazz events and The Main Event: “Historic Vibes Summit”

In the tastiest event of the popular Whale & Jazz festival, local chefs & cooks vie for the title of “Best Mendonoma Coast Chowder” in the 15th Annual Chowder Challenge.

As per previous years, two categories will be judged, Traditional New England-style Clam Chowder and Open Class. Challenge attendees will vote for People’s Choice and Most Tasted awards. The Open Class includes but is not limited to Manhattan-style Clam, Crab, Shrimp, Scallop, Lobster, Abalone, Salmon, or any other seafood combination. Vegetarian Chowders such as corn or mushroom chowder are also eligible.


Last year’s big winner was **Cape Fear of Duncans Mills** and they are coming back to defend their title!

2018 Chowder Challenge

Chowder participants (& sponsors):

Anchor Bay Store

Anchor Bay Thai Kitchen

Black Oak Catering

**Cape Fear**

Gualala Hotel

Pier Chowder House & Tap Room

Tuesday Guys


Event Sponsors:

The Lagunitas Brewing Co.

Lagunitas Brewing Company

North Coast Brewing Co.

North Coast Brewing Co.


2018 Chowder Judges:

Barry Weiss, Gualala Arts Board President and owner of Ramshead Realty

Paddy Batchelder, Gualala Arts member and chowder connoisseur

George Marshall, Gualala Arts member and veteran chowder judge

Barnebey’s Hot Four

A highlight each year is the concert of traditional New Orleans jazz, this year performed once again by the ever-popular “Barnebey’s Hot Four” of Sonoma County, returning to the Gualala Arts Center for the tenth straight year. The repertoire for the afternoon will include old favorites, the resurrection of some obscure musical gems from the golden age of jazz, and probably a few surprises for musicians and listeners alike, all in the tradition of the Big Easy. Those wanting to work off their chowder tasting with dancing will find themselves toe-tapping and boot-stomping as the infectious beats of New Orleans pushes them towards the dance floor!



Tickets are $25 in advance; $5 more day of the event and includes commemorative wine or beer glasses and 15 chowder-tasting tickets, complete with hot bread fresh out of the oven and beverages, including local fine wines and microbrews as well as soft beverages. Additional tasting tickets will be available onsite for $1 each. Free admission for music only.

For advance purchase, visit Brown Paper Tickets. To purchase in person, visit the Gualala Arts Center or Dolphin Gallery in Gualala.