Cincinnati: Camp Washington Chili

Camp Washington Chili Sign


Camp Washington Chili, Cincinnati OH

Gourmet Magazine a month or two ago devoted a good portion of its pages to street food.

(This is my for instance:)
When in Montreal, Quebec, have poutine. You can’t find poutine in Iowa.

When in Decatur, Alabama, have bbq chicken with white sauce. You can’t get white chicken sauce served in New York.

And when in Cincinnati, have chili. You can have chili anywhere in the US, but Cincinnati has its own chili that you can’t find in Florida.

Camp Washington chili is apparently the mother church of Cincinnati chili. And what makes Cincinnati chili different? Well, it’s like this: take spaghetti noodles, and top with (any or all): beef, onions, beans, cheese. Take all five and it’s called 5-way chili.

At first, I was thinking of soupy tomato-based chili with beef that people sometimes add beans to (depending on where you live. I don’t generally believe in chili with beans). When it came to our table, it was truly different – and get this – delicious.

Av had a hotdog (a “coney” here), which at Camp Washington comes two dogs/bun. He liked that too!

And: our lunch came to just a little bit over $10. Not bad for a James Beard award winner!