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Gastown Blues & Chili Fest is ready to roll!


We’re so excited to have Melody Fury on board as a new judge this year! If you don’t already know her, read on to find out why she’s a great addition to our incredible group of “official tasters”. Welcome Melody!

About Melody Fury

Melody Fury is the founder of Vancouver Food Tour and is our city’s food culture ambassador.  As a freelance writer, she showcases our food scene through her diverse culinary insight and engaging personality.  She puts her palette to the test as one of the judges for the 2011 Chinese Restaurant Awards.

Melody contributes locally to The Province, 24 Hours, Tourism Vancouver,, Eat Magazine, and Granville Magazine. She is also a guest columnist for Gastown Blog, Serious Eats, and more.

Her blog, Gourmet Fury, is nominated for best Canadian blog (10th Weblog Awards), best food, and best travel blog (2010 Canadian Weblog Awards).

Connect with her on Twitter (@gourmetfury) or Facebook (  She would love to hear from you.

Gastown Blues & Chili Fest welcomes Melody Fury as one of our fabulous judges!

Only two weeks until the 2nd Annual Gastown Blues & Chili Fest!!! We’re spreading the word…hopefully you are too! We’re thrilled to have this judge returning to provide his insight and well-tuned palate once again! Here’s some more info on the fabulous Andrew Morrison!

Andrew Morrison was born in Vancouver then schooled, raised, and rumpled in Toronto and Victoria before moving to South Africa to study history and classics at the University of Cape Town. While on a stint at the University of Toronto in 2001, he married and started a successful career as a breeder, finally returning to the coast with his young family the following year.

Growing up in the restaurant trade, Morrison spent two decades washing dishes, bussing tables, serving, and managing before landing the food writer’s job at the Westender newspaper in 2005. He then quit the service industry to concentrate on writing about food and restaurants full time. He resigned his position as Vancouver editor of EAT Magazine and sold his first website to launch Scout in November of 2008.

A regular guest on Shaw TV’s Urban Rush and Talk 1040’s Jenn & Joe Show, he is always at his happiest discussing the goings on of our local food scene. He is currently working on a new cookbook together with the Chef’s Table Society of BC to follow their 2004 regional bestseller, Vancouver Cooks, and is very proud to serve and sit on that Society’s board.

In addition to his oversight of Scout Magazine and his weekly Westender column, Morrison is a contributor to Western Living Magazine, Vancouver Magazine, and VM’s annual Eating & Drinking Guide. He lends a hand judging various culinary competitions, among them Seachoice, Chefs to the Field, the prestigious Gold Medal Plates, and The Canadian Culinary Championships, and has been a judge at the annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards for the past three years.

He lives and works by the beach in West Vancouver with his wife and two little boys, Jack and Pip.

GBCF Judge Andrew Morrison

Once again this year, the Gastown Blues & Chili Festival has lined up an amazing group of talented chefs, foodies and chili lovers to judge the Chili Contest. This week we are very excited to announce our first judge…Chef David Robertson of The Dirty Apron Cooking School!

About Chef David Robertson

For over fifteen years Canadian born David Robertson has successfully pursued a career in the culinary industry, building a strong reputation as a passionate engaging chef, an outstanding food stylist, and an excellent and inspiring tutor.

From his solid background and training in classical French fine dining, David’s passion for new flavors and foods has taken him all over the world in his pursuit to expand his culinary repertoire and skills. Numerous competition successes including being part of the Gold wining team in the 1996 Culinary Olympics in Switzerland furthered his opportunities to explore cooking beyond the geographical borders of Canada.

David’s wanderlust and zeal for new food and cooking styles as taken him to many top culinary destinations around Europe, the UK, Australia, and just outside of New York City, where he worked under renowned Thomas Henkelman at the Homestead Inn for 2 years.

Upon returning home to Vancouver in 2004 David became the Chef-de-Cuisine at the newly opened Belgian restaurant ‘Chambar’ where, alongside chef/ owner Nico Schuermans he created one of the city’s most popular and highly celebrated restaurants.

Over the last 4 years, in addition to building a reputation for creating delicious and inspiring food, David has also dedicated himself to the clean, innovative, and fresh presentation style of his creations. His obvious talent for plating has allowed him to make a name for himself as an exceptionally talented food stylist and David is in high demand among major food producers and manufacturers to help them show their food off in the very best light.

Throughout his career David has come to realize that not only does he love food he loves teaching people about food. His infectious enthusiasm for the products he uses and his patient nature are the perfect blend of ingredients to help him in his newest venture: The Dirty Apron Cooking School. In partnership with his wife Sara and Nico and Karri Schuermans, the owners of Chambar, David has fulfilling his dream with the highly acclaimed  new school in the beautifully restored heritage building at 540 Beatty Street.

We’ll be updating the site with our other judges, musicians and more over the coming weeks. Make sure to mark September 19th in your calendars!

Joe Leary will be one of the Emcees at the 2nd Annual Gastown Blues & Chili Fest!

Last week we announced that the fabulous Dawn Chubai was coming back as our Emcee for the Gastown Blues & Chili Fest! And now we’re super excited to announce that she will be followed by another awesome Vancouver talent…the always entertaining Joe Leary will be taking the “late shift” for the day! Joe is a freelance writer and TEAM 1040 Radio sports broadcaster and host, following his role as a longtime TV weather anchor and Breakfast Television presenter and co-host, during his many years and numerous jobs in the local media scene.

Joe currently writes feature sports profiles for the BC Lions, files a weekly music interview for 24 HRS Newspaper, contributes ‘The Hot Sheet’ page for Vancouver View Magazine (, as well as his weekly ‘Joe Biz Blog’ and various musings for TV WEEK Magazine’s online edition (

In between these and various and sundry other writing assignments, Joe can be heard in several capacities around the radio dial.

And not to worry Joe…although you’ve changed duties from Judge to Emcee this year, we’ll be sure you get to sample all of the fabulous Chilis that are on hand!

Make sure you save the date: Sunday, September 19th for the 2nd Annual Gastown Blues and Chili Fest!

See you there.

City TV's Dawn Chubai WIll Be Hosting the Gastown Blues & Chili Fest on Sept. 19th!

The Gastown Blues & Chili Festival is THRILLED to announce that the amazing Dawn Chubai will once again take to the stage as our Emcee on Sunday, September 19th. Dawn was an incredible host at the Inaugural Gastown Blues & Chili Fest, and we can’t wait for her to come back and help to build the excitement surrounding the incredible musicians…and of course the CHILI!!!

Dawn is currently the Co-Host of Breakfast Television on City TV, weekdays from  6-9am. But did you know she is also an Award Winning Jazz Artist who continues to entertain audiences with her own Jazz group and as guest vocalist for the Dal Richards Orchestra? AND, did you know that she has appeared in many TV series and films, most recently Eclipse (3rd installment of Twilight for those of you living under a rock)

For more information on Dawn, you can find her here:

Twitter dawn_chubai
Facebook: dawn.chubai

And stay tuned as we continue to announce our Emcees, Judges and Musicians over the coming weeks!

Jump Blues. Boogie. Rockabilly. Shuffle. Gospel…and Chili. The Inaugural Gastown Blues & Chili Festival had it all, and we’re gearing up to make the 2nd Annual event even better! The neighbourhood celebration is set to take place on Sunday, September 19th, 2010 from noon to 7PM, and will showcase local up-and-coming and high profile musicians throughout the day.

Gastown is becoming ever-more recognized for the incredibly talented chefs in the neighbourhood, and the Gastown Blues & Chili Festival provides the opportunity for them to showcase their talents in the Chili Competition. Once again, local celebrity judges will be deciding who can deliver the best Chili in town, with gallons of the Fall favourite available for all to sample.

Last year, the event attracted close to 5,000 visitors to Abbott Street, and garnered more than 1.4 million media impressions. Twenty Gastown area restaurants and the Vancouver Fire Department participated in the Chili Competition, and the day was capped off with a performance from Blues legend, Jim Byrnes.

The Gastown Blues & Chili Festival is a celebration of community businesses, local residents, and will raise funds for a local music-based charity. A carnival-type atmosphere with games, a beer tent and other entertainment is guaranteed to have both young and old enjoying the vibe!

Don’t miss Gastown Blues & Chili Fest – Heating up Vancouver’s Coolest ‘Hood

Gastown Blues & Chili Fest - Sept. 19th