When: June 18, 2016 

Where: Fort Adams State Park

Tickets: $20 in advance at or $25 day-of; Children under 12 are free

Parking: Free but limited at Fort Adams State Park



Chowderheads, get ready to enjoy endless samples of traditional and exotic chowder prepared by 21 competitors hailing from Rhode Island and as far as Florida, Maine and even Ireland at the 35th Annual Great Chowder Cook-Off, scheduled for Saturday, June 18th, 2016 from noon – 6:00 PM on the North Lawn at Fort Adams State Park.  The original and longest-running chowder championship in the country will feature the recipes of award-winning chefs representing restaurants, catering companies, clam shacks, distributors, culinary schools and institutional dining facilities, as well as other fun ingredients including the Newport Oyster Festival, live music and a variety of entertainment for all ages.


“We are so excited to kick-off Rhode Island’s summer season in such a big way by featuring the most competitors we’ve had in years, a number of whom will be bringing their Great Chowder Cook-Off Hall of Fame recipes out of retirement for everyone to enjoy once again,” said Michele Maker Palmieri, President and CEO of Waterfront Productions, the parent company of Newport Waterfront Events.  


The highly anticipated competition for bragging rights and thousands in prize money and awards for the top three finishers in the “Clam”, “Seafood” and new “Best of the Best” categories is a fun-filled day for the chowder creators as well as the tasters.  Competing chefs carefully prepare 100 gallons of delicious chowder and serve samples of their sumptuous creations to the thousands of chowder loving festival attendees who also serve as judges.


Chowder lovers will be asked to come out of their shells at the Newport Oyster Festival which will be taking place alongside the Great Chowder Cook-Off at Fort Adams.  The best of local shellfish and seafood will once again be presented “farmers’ market style” by Matunuck Oyster Farm featuring delicious oyster varieties, a raw bar and lobster rolls as well as a full bar featuring Heineken, the official beer of the Great Chowder Cook-Off, as well as wine and spirits.  The Newport Oyster Festival Stage will feature Oyster 411 educational presentations, Oyster Shucking, Oyster Slurping and Beer Shucking Contests hosted by 94 HJY DJs and music by DJ Nook.


Admission to the Great Chowder Cook-Off also includes live rock, blues and reggae music from the Brian Scott Band, Big Cat Blues Band and The Ravers, the Stop & Shop Culinary Tent with the Great Chowder Cook-Off’s own Chef Timothy and a Stop & Shop nutritionist offering lively cooking demos using Stop & Shop Nature’s Promise brand and SeaWatch International Sea Clams, a Marketplace for the shoppers in the crowd and a variety of activities for the littlenecks, including face painting, a clam dig and balloon creations.  Aside from the endless chowder, there will be a variety of other food options for sale including Friskie Fries, Del’s Lemonade, Saugy’s, McGrath Clambakes & Catering, Ben & Jerry’s, Pizza Gourmet, Kettle Korn Express, Macray’s Seafood and delectables from Open Season Catering.



Clam Category – Dan’s Place, West Greenwich, RI; DiMare Seafood, East Greenwich, RI; Greenwich Bay Oyster Bar, East Greenwich, RI; Grid Iron Ale House, Warwick, RI; Luke’s Lobster/Hurricane Chowder, NY/Maine; McGrath Clambakes & Catering, Newport, RI; Open Season Catering, Warwick, RI; Tommy’s World Famous Clam Shack, Warwick, RI; Waxy’s, Brookline, MA; Zambarano Hospital, Pascoag, RI; and Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School Culinary Program, Taunton, MA*.


Seafood Category – Bunratty Manor, County Clare, Ireland; Clifton Health Care Campus, Somerset, MA; Fire Works Catering, Providence, RI; MainSail at the Newport Marriott, Newport, RI; and The Boat Yard Bar & Grill, Newport, RI; Wharf Pub, Newport, RI; and Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School - Culinary Program, Taunton, MA*.


Best of the Best Category – Davenport’s Restaurant, East Providence & Cumberland, RI; Mooring Seafood Kitchen & Bar, Newport, RI; and Tony’s Seafood Restaurant, Cedar Key, FL.


Parking for the Great Chowder Cook-Off will be free but limited at Fort Adams State Park. Attendees are encouraged to contact Old Port Marine and the Jamestown Ferry regarding water shuttles to Fort Adams from both downtown Newport and Jamestown. Attendees can also “Bike to the Fort” sponsored by RIPTA’s Bike to Work Challenge. 


The Great Chowder Cook-Off is offering a discounted advance ticket price of $20 through Friday, June 17th with the Saturday, June 18th day-of event ticket costing $25. Children are admitted free if under the age of 12 and accompanied by a paid adult.  


Please visit for further information regarding parking, and to purchase tickets. 



Sea Watch | Stop & Shop | Heineken | Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) | Blue Cross Blue Shield of Rhode Island | Rob Levine & Associates | Matunuck Oyster Farm | Discover Newport | WPRI 12/Fox Providence/The Rhode Show | I Heart Radio Providence – 94 HJY and Coast 93.3 | What’s Up Newp | Fort Adams Trust | the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management |