I'm going to Napa Valley again! I'll be covering the Finals for the S. Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition this weekend. It was barely over a month ago that I went to the New England Regionals competition, held virtually in my backyard at Bunker Hill Community College. I'll definitely be cheering on our local winner, Anthony J. Messina from the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts.
The stakes are high in this competition! First of all, you have all of the regional winners coming together here, so competition is stiff! Second, winner of the Nationals Competition gets $20,000 along with a one year paid apprenticeship from one of the chef judges!
Last year was my first time coming. Foodbuzz held a contest to send one person to attend this event as a VIP. I was shocked but totally thrilled to be chosen. VIPs are treated really well! You can check out a summary guide to all the activities I attended here. If you're curious, here's the winning post from last year.
It's so cool to watch these accomplished young chefs execute such amazing dishes under such pressure. I can't wait to see what they have in store this year!
If you want to watch the competition this weekend, it will be streamed live from this link. Hosts this year are Ralph Pagano (STK Miami Executive Chef and also finalist from "Hell's Kitchen" Season One) and Gail Simmons, Food &Wine's Special Projects Director and Bravo's "Top Chef" Judge.
Mystery Basket Competition
Each competitor must transform a set of mystery ingredients into a delicious entrée in two hours or less. The winner receives $3,000.
Sat 3/12, 10:30am-2:00pm PST
People’s Choice Tasting Gala and Award Reception
Competitors will prepare their signature dishes, with the help of an appointed sous chef, for 200 VIP guests at a gala dinner. The winner receives $3,000. Gala participants will also vote on their favorite chef. This winner will also receive $3000.
Sun 3/13, 5:30pm-8:00pm PST
You can also vote for your fan favorite! Fan favorite also wins $3000. Better yet, people who vote get a chance to be entered to win a trip to Napa next year! Voting Starts Sunday, March 13th at 5:30pm PST to 7:00pm PST
Follow the competition on facebook or twitter. Stay tuned next week as I bring back delicious pictures and coverage of competition!
If you're interested in last year's competition (plus our other Napa Valley excursions), explore the posts below! (You can click on the pictures too, which take you to the same posts!)
Also, it's still not to late to enter the Giveaway going on right now! Ends Sunday, March 13!
- Welcome Reception (Mar 11, 2010)
- Mystery Basket (March 11, 2010)
- Signature Dish Competition (March 12, 2010)
- Del Dotto Caves / Winery (March 15, 2010)
- Antica Vineyards (March 15, 2010)
- Bouchon Bakery (March 16, 2010)
- Our own Excursion: Vineyards (Robert Mondavi and Opus One) (March 17, 2010)
- Redd (March 18, 2010)
- French Laundry (March 19, 2010
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