Champions should always retire on a high note. As 2016 winners of not just Culinary Race but the Culinaire Treasure Hunt, Team Statler and Waldorf (the cantankerous and opinionated Muppet critics) are doing just that, opening the door for a new champion to emerge.
Many people wondered – how can you possibly win both events? I am sharing with you tips and tricks to take our place on the podium in 2017.
First and foremost, have a game plan. The key is to have a strategist and an executor on your team. Take the time to answer all the clues at the start location. Make sure to read all the foodie publications Calgary puts out every month year round to stay on top of the food news. Put Google to work to hammer out the details and write down location addresses. Write clearly!
After your list of stops is complete, organize your destinations into segments of the city. Choose a strategy of outskirts to inner city, busy areas in the morning or whatever works for you. Just create your own organized map and hope that all of your answers and addresses are correct! Backtracking from the far NW to the SE is like a 10 second penalty in a 100 metre sprint – it will keep you off of the podium.
The next detail is to choose who is driver and who is navigator. It will help when one of you knows faster routes in case of construction delays and good (free!) parking spots. Do not speed or perform any other illegal traffic act – the cost will negate potential earnings.
It is also prudent to point out that it helps to have no fear. Confidence and a few kitchen skills come in handy when faced with tasks. Be aware of your team’s individual skills – who is best with a knife and who knows their booze best.
Last but most important, embrace the day and appreciate the time and effort all of the vendors have put into participating. Have fun, stop for photo ops and remember to keep supporting these businesses long after the crumbs settle.
Follow BJ on twitter: @bjoudman
Photos from the Culinary Race 2016