The Second Annual WNC Chefs Challenge Has a New Home; Competitors Announced
ASHEVILLE, N.C. – Cucina24 on Wall Street in downtown Asheville will host the 2011 WNC Chefs Challenge series each Monday night from March 7 to April 25.
The first matchup is between Chef Michael Gonzalez of Bistro on Biltmore Estate and returning competitor Chef Cary Shackelford of Deerfield. A complete list of pairings in the first heat can be found on the official website of the WNC magazine Asheville Wine & Food Festival, ashevillewineandfood.com. Tickets for each dinner are on sale now, and are $49 each (not including drinks, gratuity, or tax). Foodies are encouraged to pick their heats and purchase tickets early because most dinners sold out last year.
This year’s competitors represent restaurants in Asheville, Hendersonville, Spruce Pine, and Waynesville. We are happy to welcome Bistro at Biltmore, Boca, Chef Mo’s Restaurant & Bar, Chef’s Table, Curras Nuevo, Deerfield Community, Flight Wood Grill & Wine Bar, Knife & Fork , Lexington Avenue Brewery, The Lobster Trap, Never Blue Tapas Bar and Grille, The Orchard at Broadmoor, Pomodoros Greek & Italian Café, Posana Café, The Red Stag Grill, and Tomato Jam Café.
At each heat, the two teams are given a secret ingredient to be featured in their culinary creation. Diners get to enjoy a series of six dishes, three from each team, but are not told who has made each dish. The diners then score the dishes using the same guidelines as a professional food critic to determine who advances to the next round. The top two competitors will face off at the finale during the Asheville Wine & Food Festival Grand Tasting in August.
The WNC Chefs Challenge is produced by the WNC Magazine Asheville Wine & Food Festival, an organization devoted to enhancing the culinary reputation of its namesake city. A portion of the proceeds from the Asheville Wine & Food Festival benefits F.E.A.S.T. – a hands on group where children are taught how to grow, cook, eat, and enjoy food that is fresh, easy to prepare, affordable, and sustainable. The program can be found in housing projects, the YMCA and YWCA, and public and private schools. F.E.A.S.T. is a program of Slow Foods Asheville.