St. Matthew Norwalk Knights Raise Money for Al’s Angels

FAIRFIELD- The battle for the best chili was on, but the champion prevailed once again.

The competition was intense from many other fine cooks, but the three-time Chili for Charity “Chili Cook-Off” champion came through again.

On a beautiful sunny summer day, the Knights of Columbus St. Matthew Council 14360 held their Fourth Annual Chili Cook-Off fundraiser at Saugatuck Sweets in Fairfield on Sunday, September 2, 2018.

Six Knights from the council and two guests cooked eight chili entries, ranging from super-spicy to scrumptiously sweet. Defending Champion and Past Grand Knight George Ribellino was crowned Chili Champion once again, much to the dismay of current Grand Knight Scott Criscuolo.

“It is a dark day in the chili competition world. I really need to double my praying efforts to make sure this calamity never happens again,” said Criscuolo. “All joking aside, it’s always a great day when we can be out in the community, being a brotherhood with our Knights, and being able to raise money for a wonderful organization like Al’s Angels, who are always striving to make a difference.”

“It was a beautifully busy day with my brother knights. I truly enjoy how fierce the competition was once again, 8 mostly new & unique chilis brought out the best of our Council in a bid to bring down the reigning chili champ George Ribellino. Just 1 vote separated the top two chili entries! This event helped our Council raise & donate $640 to Al’s Angels,” said Chili for Charity Chairman Ericc Moretti.

The Chili for Charity concept was started by then-new Knight Moretti back in the summer of 2015. Moretti thought it would be a nice fraternal experience for the council while helping the community. He calls it a “fun-raiser.”

The mission of Al’s Angels is to provide holiday meals and gifts to children battling cancer, rare blood diseases, and severe financial hardship.

“The competition was going to be tough this year since I had a big target on my back. I appreciate the support of all the judges and I love the good-hearted trash talk among the Brother Knights, which is all in fun. The best part is we get to raise money for a great organization in Al’s Angels,” said Ribellino.

A great crowd came down to Saugatuck Sweets and made a total of $640 in donations for tasting and judging the chili.

“God Bless my Brother Knights from St. Matthew Church in Norwalk for holding their 4th Annual Chili Cook-Off at Saugatuck Sweets in Fairfield. Lots of fun and tremendous fun for Al’s Angels” said Al DiGuido, owner of Saugatuck Sweets and Al’s Angels founder.

Below are the winners:

Best Chili

Third place-Anthony Armentano

Second place-Richard Kovatch

First place-George Ribellino

Hottest Chili-Nona Rudd

Best Name-tie-Erric Moretti “Chili Vanilli” and Nona Rudd “Raging Cow”

The goals of the Knights of Columbus Council at Saint Matthew Church in Norwalk are to perform acts of charity, providing those in need with a range of support from financial to tactical help in dealing with a wide variety of challenges. Council members work together to foster the founding principles of our order: Charity, Unity, Fraternity & Patriotism. The goal of the council is to continue to identify specific needs in our community and muster support and help to alleviate these challenges and hardships to the best of their abilities and resources. For more info go to

By: George Ribellino | Norwalk Patch