Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Sausage League 2014 - Final - The Saint vs. The Drake

It was yet again a battle between The Saint Tavern (@thesainttavern) and The Drake Hotel (@thedrakehotel) in this year's Sausage League finals on August 6th. Just in case you're not aware the annual Sausage League, now in its 4th year, brings together chefs from some of Toronto's hottest restaurants to compete for the title of "Sausage Champion". The competition takes place at Marben (@MarbenResto) every year and for $25 per person, you get to enjoy two sausages (one from each competitor) paired with a craft beer. When the diners are done they each cast a vote for their favourite sausage to help crown the winner of that round. The restaurant with the most votes that evening gets to proceed to the next round of the tournament.

In this year's finals, a lot was at stake for Jesse Vallins (@jessevallins) of The Saint; the two-time reigning Sausage League champion surely had a reputation to uphold. However, the pressure was looming for John Koplimae (@J_Koplimae) of The Drake as well since he was so close to taking home the Fromer's cup last year.

Who will it be? Jesse or John? Read on to find out!

Photo Credit: Marben

I snagged a seat at Marben's chef's table for the event. Given my view, I knew exactly whose sausage dish belonged to which chef. This didn't sway nor influence my decision though - I still voted for the sausage which I thought was superior.

Smoked BBQ brisket, buttermilk bun, coleslaw, BBQ sauce, morney 5 cheese, crispy onions

Franks and Beans: All beef cheddar smokie, bone marrow baked beans, tater tots, spicy pickle, fruit ketchup

After the first couple of bites from each sausage it was a pretty clear decision for me ... I liked the blue sausage a lot better. The blue sausage had a crisp casing, and it was juicy with a cohesive, compact and springy texture. The red sausage was inferior in that the brisket inside was a bit dry, and I personally didn't like its stringy texture. Although the flavour was not bad and the buttermilk bun was quite nice and soft I still preferred the blue sausage

It seemed like the majority of voters came to the same conclusion:

WINNER = BLUE SAUSAGE, Jesse Vallins from The Saint Tavern.

Photo Credit: Marben

With a three time win under his belt, Jesse announced on social media the same night with the following message:

Jesse definitely went out with a bang. 13 wins and 1 loss...what an impressive record. And the fact that the loss was from the final's in 2011 means that Jesse was in the finals for every single year since the beginning of Sausage League. He is really The Sausage King

Related Posts:
Sausage League 2011
Sausage League 2013 - First Round
Sausage League 2013 - Final
Sausage League 2014 - Second Round