Soup Sunday started out as an idea as small as a bouillon cube and mushroomed into something warm and wonderful. Each year, on a February Sunday, Middle Tennessee soup lovers are lured from their couches to take part and compete in the event.
Dozens of restaurants also participate, bringing pots of soups hot and cold, savory and sweet. Crowds spoon and slurp, while judges sip and make notes before awarding the top soup titles and the bragging rights that go with them.
It’s competitive, and sometimes a sure favorite like corn bisque will get the judges’ nod for the Golden Spoon award. Other chefs think outside the pot, hoping for the Silver Ladle, given to the most creative soup. One contender: strawberry-tomato-rosemary soup made into an ice pop!
Soup Sunday is a tradition for some local eateries—a few have participated most every year since the beginning in 1993. It wouldn’t be an event without Midtown Café’s Lemon Artichoke Soup, present and accounted for each year by popular demand. For newer restaurants, Soup Sunday is a chance to introduce the public to their skilled chefs.
Burger joint or bistro, pub or cooking school—there’s a soup maker for everyone, and in that spirit, Soup Sunday is a family-friendly atmosphere set early in the day (before nap time!), with plenty of fun activities.
And it’s all for a good cause. Soup Sunday supports Our Kids, which provides clinical and counseling services to families coping with issues of child abuse.
–By Nicki P. Wood, a food writer in Nashville, TN