Release Date: May 1,2019

Press Release: Copper Penny Wins the 2019 Downtown Restaurant Madness Tournament

Wilmington, NC – Copper Penny was crowned as the winner of the second Downtown Restaurant Madness Event.  Curated by Wilmington Downtown Incorporated (WDI), the competition gathered over 2,000 votes on social media with area residents and visitors selecting their favorite restaurant.  WDI created brackets that voters narrowed down each week until the “chompion” was selected.  Copper Penny received the 2019 trophy for the win and bragging rights for the year. 

“Our entire Copper Penny team is thrilled to win this chomp-etition,” joked Brian Cadwallader, owner and proprietor of Copper Penny.  “Kidding aside, Downtown has a great food scene with many loyal patrons so winning this unique award is humbling,” he added. 

WDI started the contest by asking local residents and visitors to nominate their favorite Downtown restaurant.  Much like the “March Madness” basketball tournament, sixteen restaurants ultimately made the “tournament” with organizers creating brackets that paired the restaurants receiving the most nominations against the restaurants with the fewest nominations. 

Each week, people voted for their favorite with the winner advancing in the competition from the “Sweet Sixteen” to the “Elite Ate” and then on to the “Final Fork.”  This final round included the defending chompions Fork ‘n’ Cork, Savorez, Circa 1922 and the eventual Chompion, Copper Penny.   

“Downtown Wilmington is fortunate to have a great assortment of restaurants,” said WDI President Ed Wolverton.  “Restaurant Madness harnesses social media and references the March basketball tournaments to highlight all the food options available in Downtown including fine dining, family-friendly, pub food, farm-to-table and grab and go places,” he said. 

With this award presentation, Restaurant Madness has wrapped up its second season.  The third season will start in the first quarter of 2020.  To learn about next year’s schedule and other events and activities in Downtown, join the e-mail list 



       Trophy presentation: Owner, Brian Cadwallader (center back), Copper Penny staff and WDI President & CEO (right)

About Copper Penny

The Copper Penny offers an eclectic mix of appetizers, salads, and sandwiches along with an extensive selection of mixed drinks and beers.


About Wilmington Downtown Incorporated

WDI's mission is to promote the economic growth and development of Downtown Wilmington. 



Ed Wolverton, WDI President & CEO         



Brian Cadwallader, Owner