In support of sustainable seafood, top Ocean Wise chefs competed head to head in events held in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver for the prestigious honour of Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown Champion in each city.

Each event showcased a delicious array of sustainable seafood chowders paired with local craft beers. Guests were invited to sample all the original chowders and beer pairings and vote for their favourite in the People’s Choice awards.

Ocean Wise sustainable seafood event

Chowder + beer = a winning combination for sustainable seafood awareness.

The judges had the toughest job of all, evaluating each chowder and beer pairing and selecting who would be crowned the 2014 Vancouver Aquarium Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown champions.

From Toronto, Chef Kendall Collingridge of Hooked took home the honour with his Thai mussel sustainable chowder. People’s Choice went to Chef Thomas Heitz from Horizons at Centennial College for his trout chowder.

Toronto Chowder Chowdown

Thomas and Kendall pose for a winning photograph at Toronto Chowder Chowdown. Photo Credit: Tamara Lockwood Photography.

In Calgary, the city’s champion was Chef Duncan Ly of Yellow Door Bistro at Hotel Arts for his kuri squash and seafood chowder, and People’s Choice was awarded to Chef Michael Smith of Thomsons Restaurant at Hyatt Regency Calgary. Best chowder and beer pairing award went to Chef JW Foster of Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel for their Big Rock Brewery collaboration.

Ocean Wise Chowder chowdown Calgary

Chef Duncan Ly shows off his Ocean Wise Chowder award. Photo Credit: Marnie Burkhart

In Vancouver, best beer and chowder pairing was awarded to Chris Whittaker from Forage and R & B Brewery. Chef Ned Bell of Yew seafood + Bar from the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver was the big winner claiming both the People’s Choice and the Chowder Chowdown champion award with his Ocean Wise smoked black cod “Chowda.”

Chef Ned Bell, winner of 2014 Vancouver Chowder Chowdown

Chef Ned Bell from YEW takes home both the People’s Choice and the Chowder Chowdown Champion Award. Photo Credit: Allison Kuhl.

Thank you to the many guests, sponsors, partners, chefs and volunteers who made Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown 2014 a success. With over 1,000 people in attendance across all three events, Chowder Chowdown raises awareness for sustainable seafood to help keep our oceans healthy. Look for the Ocean Wise symbol next to a seafood item for the Vancouver Aquarium’s assurance of an ocean-friendly seafood choice.

Have questions about sustainable seafood? Check out our most frequently asked questions or visit us at to learn more about how you can help protect our oceans.

We look forward to welcoming everyone back for Ocean Wise Chowder Chowdown 2015!

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