As an employee of one of the vendors at the Wing Fest, I know for a fact that the venue was sold to at least triple it's capacity WELL before the event was held. It was not a matter of a "last minute surge in sales" that caused this fiasco.
It was incompetent planning from the start. Besides the crowds, fights, disorganization and greed, let's talk about judging...
As someone else stated, how are people supposed to evaluate a product when everyone is being pushed through the venue and all wings were tossed into one disposable container? Ahh, I know why that occured. EEF was more concerned about making money, moving bodies through the venue, and taking the next person's dollar than actually putting on a viable competition for the vendors to compete and showcase their product. Charity? I honestly could care less.
We came to compete. Many other vendors have a similar opinion.
As far as Best Wing...congrats to East Coast -they definitely had a fine product.
Hottest wing? What a travesty. Hottest wing is not something that is a matter of opinion. Firstly, by what means were the judges qualified? Celebrity judges? What a joke. They had absolutely no clue as to how a food competition should be judged, or what qualities they should be discerning with their palettes. The judging table looked more like a sloppy buffet line than a culinary tasting. The judges hadn't a clue. I watched one portly judge consume 4 different wings in under 2 minutes. Anyone who knows a minuscule amount about spicy food understands that each different pepper has a different time frame for it's heat to manifest. Consuming multiple wings without proper time between tastings and palette cleansing judge blends everything together into one hot, indiscernible burn. You'd think an "Educational Enrichment Foundation", putting on such a large event, would at least have basic knowledge of the product showcased at the event.
Hopelessly incompetent planning, unqualified and ignorant judges.
The EEF is giving refunds to the general public...how about a refund for all of the vendors.
And it was so very nice of the EEF to award the Hilton with hottest wing - they did get the venue for free.
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