Chowdown in Korea Town World Kimchi Eating Championship

Location: Chicago, IL
Date: 08-11-2013
Winner: Miki Sudo


We are a people who remember firsts. President Washington, we're all over the guy. Can't get enough of him. President Tyler? Not so much. Wait, not at all.

None who care about the eating arts and sciences shall forget this first: Because as the rain fell hard on this black-steam Chicago afternoon, Miki Sudo shone like a beacon to claim her first-ever MLE title. And it reads: Kimchi. Six minutes. Eight-and-a-half pounds. She, and she alone, was the winner of the inaugural Chowdown in Korea Town World Kimchi Eating Championship.

Next time you're at the grocery store, ask for directions to the fresh produce aisle and weigh out of 8.5 lbs of cabbage. Then imagine that cabbage being on fire. And fermented. And all together problematic for those not used to its charms. Well, Miki Sudo straight up owned that.

Sudo was neck-and-neck with Sonya Thomas and Adrian "the Rabbit" Morgan, before pulling away at the four-minute mark; Thomas and Morgan would tie for second. Erik The Red asserted himself with a fourth-place money finish, proving that his spicy-food talents have not deserted him. Badlands Booker had never eaten kimchi until this event and he took fifth, proving that you never can tell now can you? Others ate well but could not match the top five for power or purpose. Perhaps they were still focused on the Korean Traditional Dance troupe or the B-boy Breakdance Battle that preceded MLE on the Main Stage at the 2013 Chicago Korean Festival. Who can say? You wouldn't blame them—both acts were highly entertaining.

But none left the corner of Chicago's Bryn Mawr and Central Park Avenues with more pop in their step than Ms Sudo. The cameras jostled for position. The microphones, packed like a bunch of cold black roses, thrust to catch her every word. And she smiled. She smiled all the way home.

Final Results! 1) Miki Sudo 8.5 lbs in 6 minutes 2) Sonya Thomas 6.5 2) Adrian Morgan 6.5 4) Erik The Red Denmark 5 5) Badlands Booker 4.875 6) Michelle Lesco 4.75 7) Buffalo Jim Reeves 2.75 8) Crazy Legs Conti 2.625. 9) Andrew Kogutkiewicz 2.375 10) Matthew Raible 1.875

This contest took place at 5pm Central, on Sunday, August 11, 2013 as part of the Chicago Korean Festival at the Main Stage, 3600-3850 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue, Chicago, Illinois!

TOTAL PRIZE PURSE: $3,500! 1st: $1750 2nd: $900 3rd: $500 4th: $250 5th: $100

Please note: This contest is restricted to participants aged 18 and over.

About The Chowdown in Korea Town World Kimchi Eating Championship At The Chicago Korean Festival! Lights! Camera! Kimchi! is the theme of this year's Chicago Korean Festival, a widely anticipated Chicago venue where visitors can sample the spices, sights and sounds of traditional and modern Korea. While the spicy, tangy cold condiment is the most well known and popular of Korean foods, there is a larger cultural aspect to display and share with all. Come and taste the spirit of Korea!

CLICK HERE for more information on the 2013 Chicago Korean Festival!

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*All applicants must be 18 years of age or older and fully acknowledge and understand the inherent dangers and risks associated with participating in an eating contest. The applicant further acknowledges and understands that the MLE/IFOCE coordinates with event sponsor(s) to select and approve eligible participants, and that the MLE/IFOCE shall decide, at its sole discretion, whether an applicant is eligible to participate in any eating event, and/or related activities. The MLE/IFOCE may revoke an applicant's eligibility to participate in the eating contest, or related activities, at any time, for any reason, at its sole discretion. The MLE/IFOCE and the event sponsors reserve the right, at any time, to change any and all details concerning the event, including, e.g., time, duration, location and prize structure.