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Love And Chili In Cincinnati

Posted by

Nov 05, 2018

This week's episode of The Sporkful podcast is up! Listen through the player or iTunes/Podcasts app. (And please subscribe!)

If you know anything about food in Cincinnati, you probably know about the chili.

There are 250 chili parlors in Cincinnati -- that’s about three times more than the number of McDonald’s there.

"You can't be in Cincinnati and not have Cincinnati chili," one chili fan tells Dan, in this week's episode.

But this midwestern specialty has roots that span centuries and continents.

Today on the Sporkful, we follow Cincinnati chili from Sri Lanka to Greece to the American midwest. And we visit a chili parlor that embodies that rich history.


Camp Washington Chili opened in 1940. It's the oldest chili parlor in Cincinnati still owned by the family that opened it.

More than any of the other chili spots, Camp Washington is the standard bearer for Cincinnati chili. And the secret to Camp Washington's success is the spices.


"My husband has the secret recipe," says Camp Washington's owner Maria Papakirk. "That might be the reason that we're still together actually."

Plus later in the episode, we learn about Cincinnati's past as a hub of fine French dining, and Dan talks with Chef Jean Robert de Cavel (below) about his love affair with this midwestern city.


Today's sponsors:

Interstitial music in this episode by Black Label Music:

- "Summer Of Our Lives" by Stephen Clinton Sullivan

- "Rogue Apples" by Karla Dietmeyer and Olivia Diercks

- "Dreamin' Long" by Erick Anderson

- "Small Talk" by Haley Briasco

- "Playful Rhodes" by Stephen Sullivan

- "Sweet Summer Love" by Stephen Sullivan

- "Happy Jackson" by Ken Brahmstedt

Photos: Dan Pashman and courtesy of the JR Group

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