Forage Once Again Victorious at ‘Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown’

The GOODS from Forage

Vancouver, BC | Chef Welbert Choi and his talented Forage crew took home the title of: “Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown Champion” last night in a tie finish for Judge’s Champion, along with Fanny Bay Oyster Bar. Chef Choi’s winning chowder of BBQ duck, Berezan shrimp, topped with a crab and shrimp toast will be on the menu in Forage starting tonight.

Forage’s history with the Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown is peppered with wins. After just 24 hours of being open in 2012, Forage took home Judge’s Champion, and People’s Choice. Following on that, in 2013 the title of Chowder Champion was again awarded to Forage’s culinary team. Forage brought home Best Beer Pairing in 2014. About our 2019 win, Chef Welbert Choi had this to say: “To continue our legacy with this event is a great achievement. My team worked hard, and we’re very proud of this dish.”

In its 11th year, as one of this city’s most fun events, this competition brings together a handful of the province’s top restaurants to battle it out against each other in a chowder and beer pairing tasting throwdown. Among the competitors this year were Torafuku, Coquille, Langara Fishing Lodge, Quaaout Lodge, and Ocean Wise’s own culinary team. There were 14 entries in total. The judges score on creativity, presentation, taste, and beer pairing. Three prizes are awarded; Judge’s Champion, People’s Choice, and Best Beer Pairing. All proceeds from ticket sales for the Chowdown directly support the Ocean Wise sustainable seafood program.

About Forage | Now in its 6th year, Forage brings the best from BC’s farmers, fishers and foragers to the table. Alongside the menu is a bar program stocked with BC’s best craft breweries, distilleries, and a 100% BC wine list. Be sure to book on Saturday nights for the bison board experience. Forage is an ideal destination for breakfast seven days a week, brunch on weekends, and nightly for drinks and dinner from 5:00 pm.

About Chef Welbert Choi | Chef Welbert Choi is quietly driven. Everything he does is steeped in his innate creativity. As a Chef he brings a humble, but generous spirit to everything he cooks. Welbert was born in Hong Kong. He and his family moved to North Burnaby during his teenage years. He trained at Dubrulle Culinary Institute. His resume includes catering at the Hilton Burnaby, working in the kitchen at Opus’s former restaurant Elixir, and he helped open Forage in 2012 as Pastry Chef. After 2 years, he was given the title of Forage’s Chef de Cuisine. He has run daily operations in the Forage kitchen since that time. Now he is the Executive Chef of Forage, Timber, and Forage Catering.

Fostering the menu at Forage has deepened his relationships with local producers. He believes that it is the responsibility of all Vancouver chefs to help build long term farming, fishing and foraging legacies in BC for generations to come by working closely with local producers.

Food for him should bring people and families together, build communities, and be a flavourful part of gatherings and celebrations. He chooses his ingredients with respect, considers the environmental impact of what he brings into the kitchen, and approaches food in a way that celebrates the whole ingredient.

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