From creamy chicken noodle soup and spicy Cajun seafood chowder to beefy cheeseburger soup, Port Washington’s 2017 Souper Bowl had a special flavor for everyone.
Hundreds of people came to Archangel Michael Greek Orthodox Church in Port Washington on Saturday to treat their taste buds and escape the chilly weather for the ninth annual Souper Bowl. The broad selection also included potato soup, cauliflower soup, Tuscan cabbage and bean soup, and hearty chickpea soup.
“Where else can you try 16 soups at once?” said Ayhan Hassan, a chef and owner of Ayhan’s Shish Kebab Mediterranean Grill.
As hundreds lined up to sample soups from participating Port Washington restaurants, Hassan said vendors spent much time preparing their best soups for the large number of people.
“It’s not just like preparing something small for one or two people,” he said. “You have to know how to measure for a lot of people so it doesn’t come out too salty, too burned. It’s planning so it comes out right.”
Port Washington Chamber of Commerce organizers said the event drew roughly 600 people. A portion of the proceeds will go to the food pantry at Our Lady of Fatima Social Ministry in Port Washington.
Anthony Pergola, 75, of Port Washington, had a plateful of several soups and couldn’t decide which one he liked best.
“I love them all,” he said, laughing. “It’s hard to pick.”
Pergola’s daughter Darlene Pergola Apolant, 49, of Jericho, spent the day with her son, Kolton Apolant, 9, and her parents. She had sampled a few soups, including chicken noodle and a pizza-flavored soup.
“I’m having a fantastic day,” Apolant said, adding that the Souper Bowl had become a special part of Port Washington. “It’s a very tightly knit community and this is for a good cause.”
John Lobachewski, 63, and his wife, Barbara, 66, of Bellrose, Queens, made the trip from the city for the second consecutive year to spend the 26-degree day indoors amid a selection of warm soups.
Barbara Lobachewski said her favorite soup was the Cajun seafood chowder, for its spiciness.
John Lobachewski, whose favorite was the Italian wedding soup, said the trip was worth it.
“It’s a great way to spend an afternoon,” he said. “You get to stay warm and experience a little of everything.”