Chili and fall go together like…coffee and cake, burgers and beer, Batman & Robin…Okay, that last one isn’t food, but you get the idea. Earlier, we covered local fall beers and places you can enjoy a glass of hard cider. Now, we’re taking on the perfect match to those delicious drinks: chili, where comfort food and cold weather intersect. Here are places you can get a great cup (or bowl) of chili, as well as a couple of local chili cook-offs where you can test your culinary mettle with the best metro Detroit has to offer.
Located in Troy, Camp Ticonderoga is one of a few locations owned by the same restaurant group (they also own The Moose Preserve and The Iroquois Club in Bloomfield Hills, Deadwood in Northville, and The White Horse Inn in Metamora). At Camp Ticonderoga, you will find their venison chili, which is a tomato chili made with naturally lean venison and garnished with sour cream and scallions. Come for the venison chili, stay for the rustic atmosphere.
Brady’s Tavern in Beverly Hills is on point when it comes to chili. Brady’s Chili, A.K.A. “The Award Winner,” comes as is without toppings. Alternatively, you can go “All the Way,” adding shredded cheddar, sour cream and onions to Brady’s Chili and have it served in an edible bread bowl. Brady’s doesn’t stop there, however. If beef chili isn’t your thing, give Brady’s chicken chili a shot, which is now back by popular demand.
Made to honor the legacy of the original Jim Brady’s location on 7 Mile & Greenfield, the Royal Oak location has committed itself to using only Michigan-made products in its craft beer, craft cocktails and food. When it comes to chili, Jim Brady’s uses an original recipe from the 1954 location. It’s easy to be distracted by the interior design and two full bars at Jim Brady’s, but don’t let that keep you from enjoying a cup or bowl of its signature chili before moving on to your main course of the night.
Where better to get a bowl of chili than at a place whose specialty is smoked bar-b-cue? The “backlot” is where they keep their green hickory smoker on a low temperature, letting the food bask in and absorb the flavor of the smoke for hours. That includes the chili, which is made from house-smoked ground beef. Did I mention there’s pizza, too?
Below are a few local chili cook-offs where you can test your chili-making skills against some of the best the area has to offer.