The Rutland Region Chamber of Commerce announced the Chef’s Best Taste Awards, Chef’s Best Presentation Award and People’s Choice Award at the 34th Annual Chamber Winter In August Celebration sponsored by Rutland Herald. This is the third year the Chamber established a "Chef led panel" of experts to determine the winners. The panel was made up of Chef Bill Noel, Chef Ben Layden, and Mike Clifford. The 9 criteria included everything from complimenting flavors to appeal to the eye. Restaurants were rated on a weighted point system and scored accordingly. Attendees voted by ballot throughout the evening for the People’s Choice Award.
The Chef’s Best Taste Award was presented to Greenfields Restaurant at the Holiday Inn, Chef’s Best Taste Runner Up Award going to the The American Legion Post 31. The Chef’s Best Display Award went to Sweet Lovin’ Creations, Chef’s Best Display Runner Up Award went to Killington. The People’s Choice Award was presented to Red Clover Inn.
Over 700 people including Senator Patrick Leahy, Congressman Peter Welch, Vermont Commissioner of Tourism Megan Smith, Mayor Chris Louras and many other officials, along with Killington Resort and Okemo Mountain Resort attended. This year’s event was held at the Vermont Farmers Food Center (home to the indoor Winter Farmers Market) in Rutland. According to Tom Donahue, CEO at the Rutland Region Chamber of Commerce: "Winter In August is one of the most anticipated Rutland Region Chamber events of the summer and has become a true taste of Vermont". “We appreciate the boost our resorts provide our economy.”
The event held annually recognizes the positive economic impact that the ski industry has on the Rutland region and Vermont. Thirty one area restaurants and businesses provided delicious food for attendees to enjoy while the businesses marketed their establishments.