• Did Someone Say Mac 'n' Cheese?

    The Mac 'n' Cheese Throwdown is back — as in, back, back. For real this time. After a reinvented version of the festival saw success on the blacktop this past summer we're happy to announce that the full-scale event this is BACK this spring, set for April 9, 2022.


    As per usual, our signature local chefs will showcase their mac-tastic bites along with over 20 craft beers, spirits and wines.


    Bringing back perennial favorites: The Cleveland Clinic, Gourmet Guy Cafe, Hatfield's Goode Grub, Nuevo Modern Mexican & Tequila Bar, SOL, and more. Three local celebrity judges and YOU will decide who wins the the ultimate title in comfort food of Cleveland’s “Best Mac 'n' Cheese” at The Mac 'n' Cheese Throwdown.


    Presented by FirstEnergy & SMART Local 33, the Mac 'n' Cheese Throwdown celebrates the rise of the Cleveland food scene, highlighting numerous Cleveland food trucks. The Mac 'n' Cheese Throwdown also is a fundraiser for W.A.G.S. 4 Kids, a local 501(c)(3) Non-Profit.

  • 6th Annual Mac 'n' Cheese Throwdown

    Saturday, April 9, 2022

    12:00PM - 3:30PM

    The Madison

    4601 Payne Ave, Cleveland, OH 44103 ● Map It




    Cleveland's finest Restaurants & Food Trucks will be serving up delicious mac and cheese specials and MORE all day long. Listen to live acoustic entertainment at the Front St Social Stage, vote for your favorite mac dishes, and share your experiences on social to win prizes.





    Participating chefs will go head-to-head in two categories: “Classic Mac” and “Modern Mac” with one goal in mind – to be named the “Best Mac in Cleveland” by a panel of celebrity judges and a people’s choice vote by text.





    VIP $50/person. (All ages)

    General Admission $35/person. (All ages)

    Early Bird (General) $30/person. (All ages)


    Purchase your tickets!

    Tickets On Sale Now!

    Get 'em before we sell out! Want to sample all the deliciousness & cast your vote on the best of the bunch?

    Click Here

    Is Your Mouth Watering Yet?

    Check Out The Competition

    Calling All Volunteers!


    Thank you for your interest in volunteering for The Mac 'N Cheese Throwdown! Volunteers are truly the backbone of any event and your support is greatly appreciated.

    Read More

    Thanks to all of you - W.A.G.S. 4 Kids has raised over $360,000 since 2017 towards our service dog training program - placing mobility service and autism spectrum service dogs exclusively with kids throughout Northeast and Central Ohio!

    For more information contact

    Sera Nelson
    Executive Director

    Email: sera@wags4kids.com 
    Phone: 216-586-5853 x2

  • Mac-Tastic Entertainment

    Live Music and Mac -

    A Winning Combination!

    Entertainment sponsored by Front St Social


    Live, acoustic entertainment will be provided during the Mac 'n' Cheese Throwdown! Local Cleveland musicians will be performing on the Front St Social stage for all to enjoy, including:


    Ziggy D of C-Level

    Sunset Harmony

    Furious George Hartwig

    Michael McFarland




    Map & Menus

  • Judges

    Meet Our Celebrity Judges

    Judge #1

    Heather Doeberling


    Boss Chick N Beer

    Heather Doeberling realized she had a love for smoked meats while she worked as a young chef in the ’90s in various Texas border towns. “There’s a lot of barbecue influence there, and you really learn a lot about how to treat meat and respect the ingredients,” says Doeberling. That love for simple ingredients followed her to Northeast Ohio when she opened Tex-Mex hot spot Boca Loca Burrito Factory in 2012, followed by Boss Chick N Beer six years later in Berea. At Boss Chick N Beer, she’s become known for her chicken wings, which use two secret spice blends and a unique cooking technique. The results are so delicious and flavorful the crisp wings never need sauce. “I get my biggest inspiration from keeping it so simple and seasoning things in such a way that it can almost not be recreated,” she says.


    *Boss can now be found in 3 locations: Berea, Bay Village & Seven Hills! MUST try!

    Judge #2

    Emanuel Wallace


    Cleveland Scene Magazine

    Emanuel Wallace is a photographer and journalist from Cleveland, Ohio. He has been the staff photographer for Cleveland Scene magazine since 2014. In the past, he has contributed to Cleveland.com, Destination Cleveland and the Call & Post, among other outlets. In his spare time, Emanuel likes to experiment with making various cocktails and brewing his own beer. Find him on Twitter & Instagram at @mannywallace.

    Judge #1

    Michael Januska


    Old Brooklyn Cheese Company

    Michael's background has been in the restaurant industry for the past 27 years. He graduated culinary school in Florida. Worked in a few popular restaurants in Cleveland for a few years, before heading to Europe. Working as an Executive Chef in London for 16 years gave him the opportunities to experience new and traditional culinary adventures.


    His love and appreciation of cheeses came from spending time at Neals Yard Dairy, in Covent Garden, London. Many of his shift breaks were spent in the small original shop. " the first time I walked into NYD, my senses went into overload. The smell of all of the cheeses sitting out. I will never forget the aroma. Heaven."


    From that day forward, Michael began a journey to discover the 'old world' ways of making food. Every holiday would become a hands on education. Pressing olives to make olive oil in Baena, Spain. Pulling the heavy curds from the copper vats to make Parmigiano reggiano. Making chorizo sausages at a friends family farm. Begging every cheese shop in Paris to let me into their aging cellars. Walking through the fields of wandering Iberico pigs and tasting the acorns that they feed on.


    People's Choice Judge


    Text to Vote! It's as easy as 1-2-3!
    1. Text MAC to 66866.
    2. Click the survey link to vote for your choice for Best Mac!  
    3.  Click Submit!
    Voting opens when doors open and closes promptly at 3:00pm
  • Vote for People's Choice!

    Text to Vote! It's as easy as 1-2-3!



    Text MAC to a 66866



    Click the survey link to vote for your choice for Best Mac!



    Choose your favorite and click "Submit"!

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