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Winning entry by John Fine, Men’s Chocolate Cake Contest.

The chocolate cake was not the FIRST thing I went and looked at when I visited the county fair last week

Close, though. From the parking lot, I took a left into the Community Building and glanced at some quilts and other textiles, because they were right there.

Love the quilts; they are truly a cool part of the fair.

No, the cake came second. I gave the textiles a moment, and then bee-lined it to the baked goods.

With so much to see at county fair, why cake?

I wanted to see if someone else assumed the meltable mantle of Men-Only Chocolate Cake Baking contest.

And I was happy to see that there were TWO entries. It may not seem like that many, but bear with me.

First of all, I don’t expect you to recall (don’t you??) but perhaps you recall I “won” the contest in 2018.

Yessir, took home a $10 premium and bragging rights. Top-ranked chocolate cake in the land, dudes. (Certainly you recall now.)

Yes, mine was the ONLY chocolate cake. In 2018, no one else entered, and, okay, I earned not a blue ribbon but a red one.

Top-ranked, as in lone entry — and second-place. The judges gave me credit for creativity (one way of putting it), but declared the cake all but inedible due to my use of molasses in the recipe giving it a unique quality.

Call it an Aromatic Doorstop.

I could have sliced off a piece and entered it in Ceramics or Other Traditional Crafts.

So I extend my hearty congratulations to 2019 winner John Fine and Gary Reed, and thank them for entering. Definitely took the pressure off me.

Both entries looked yummy (no, I did not sneak a taste!) but John’s clearly deserved points for his cherry-studded take on Black Forest Cake.

I urge Gary and John, and all other men, to enter again in 2020. I may well be back to reclaim my cocoa-laced crown, but it will remain molasses free.

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