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Jamaican me hungry! Eaters chow down in Caribbean patty-eating contest • Brooklyn Paper

Jamaican me hungry! Eaters chow down in Caribbean patty-eating contest

In the zone: Wayne Algenio methodically put away seven patties in five minutes.
Community News Group / Ruth Brown

He was the upper crust of the competition!

An experienced competitive eater became the first ever Golden Krust Jamaican Patty Eating Contest champion in a chow-down in Prospect Heights on Sunday night, blitzing his five amateur opponents by ingesting a little over seven of the savory beef-filled hand pies in five minutes — and still leaving room for seconds, he said.

“I feel great — I could eat a bunch more,” said Queens native Wayne “Wayney Wonder” Algenio, after claiming his trophy, a gift certificate to Jamaican bakery chain Golden Krust, and all of his leftovers — which he said he would polish off tomorrow.

Algenio is a seasoned veteran at shoveling culturally-specific foods down his gullet, having also competed in eating battles centered around Central European kolaches, Japanese curry and Filipino balut — which are developing duck embryos boiled and eaten out of their shells.

“Kim chi, pizza, hot dogs, hamburgers — you name it, I’ve most likely eaten it,” said Algenio, who said that he grew up near a Golden Krust outlet and has been eating patties — which are similar to empanadas — his whole life.

The inaugural munching match, which took place outside the Brooklyn Museum, was part of the Caribbean community’s week-long Carnival celebrations, which will culminate in the annual Labor Day Parade down Flatbush Avenue on Monday.

Winners are grinners: Borough President Adams awards Wayne Algenio his trophy.
Community News Group / Ruth Brown

The portable pastries are a popular snacks for parade-goers, and the mastermind behind the food-fight said he wanted to give them their own event on par with Brooklyn’s other iconic public-holiday eating competition.

“What July 4 and hot dogs mean to Americans, the patty means to the Caribbean community,” said Borough President Adams, who claimed he could probably down four patties in five minutes.

But the patty gorge-fest is not in the same league as the Coney Island contest yet. Algenio appeared to be the only experienced eater on stage, and the six contestants were the only people who applied to compete, according to a spokesman for the Beep — though he expects entries to skyrocket next year once the word gets out.

It is also quite literally not in the same league — Sunday’s feeding frenzy was not held under the auspices of Major League Eating, the main governing body for mastication-based sports and the outfit behind the Nathan’s Hot Dog-Eating Contest.

Borough Hall would not say if it plans to join the fold in future years, but the association says the nascent nosh-off would be welcome.

“The Jamaican patty is a venerable food item and we’d love to sanction the contest in the future, to lend legitimacy and allow the challenge to go forward safely and with aplomb,” said Richard Shea, co-founder of Major League Eating.

Two hands are better than one: Some contestants attempted a double-patty method.
Community News Group / Ruth Brown

Reach deputy editor Ruth Brown at rbrown@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–9309. Follow her at twitter.com/rbbrown.

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