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I | San Diego

Two competing chefs brought their “A” game to the first ever Chef’s Plate competition by Chef’s Roll. RoseAna Peyron, Executive Chef of Counterpoint San Diego battled Chef Mikel Anthony of Rōnin Noodle House in a two-course duel. Up for grabs was a “golden ticket” to the World Food Championships’ Seafood Category in Las Vegas with a chance to win up to $100,000. The pressure was on as they had an esteemed panel of judges to impress including award-winning Chef William Bradley, master of taste and presentation Chef Andrew Spurgin, and seafood expert Tommy Gomes. The Knife Fight was hosted by Harvard Cookin’ Girl School in La Jolla, California and emceed by the always charismatic Bibi Kasrai.

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Chef’s Roll co-founder Thomas Keslinke did the coin toss with winner Chef RoseAna deciding to go second

Chef Mikel, a natural performer, had no problem getting into the groove explaining the ingredients he used as well as his technique and flavor profiles. With a little goading by Bibi he even performed one of his signature culinary raps.
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He served up a beautifully plated Hiramasa (Baja Farmed Yellowtail) / honeydew ponzu / passion fruit / finger lime dish that showed the judges and guests that this competition was being taken very seriously.

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hiramasa (Baja farmed yellowtail) / honeydew ponzu / passion fruit / finger lime

Chef RoseAna had a tough act to follow, but wowed the crowd with a pork adobo made with pork jowl, topped with a cabbage, radish and cucumber slaw, Anaheim chili and crispy pig ears.
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pork adobo made with pork jowl, topped with a cabbage, radish and cucumber slaw, Anaheim chili and crispy pig ears

Twenty guests were in attendance, enjoying wine pairings sponsored by We Olive and participating in the judging process. Guests were asked to vote based on taste, presentation, and creativity. Their scores were combined with weighted judges’ scores at the end of the night.  In attendance was Chef Ricardo Heredia, last year’s winner of the World Food Championships’ bacon category.
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For the main course Chef Mikel came out swinging with mind-blowing pork jowl scallops / Tahitian squash / apple / fennel / pepitas / chicharron.

pork jowl scallops / Tahitian squash / apple / fennel / pepitas / chicharron
pork jowl scallops / Tahitian squash / apple / fennel / pepitas / chicharron

At this point the guests all agreed it was going to come down to Chef RoseAna’s next and final course.
She did not disappoint with raw Hiramasa (Baja Farmed Yellowtail) on taro root tostadas with cilantro / Fiji apple / Meyer lemon purée / charred shishito purée / borage flower that looked beautiful and was bursting with flavor.

hiramasa (Baja farmed yellowtail) on taro root tostadas with cilantro / Fiji apple / Meyer lemon purée / charred shishito purée / borage flower
hiramasa (Baja farmed yellowtail) on taro root tostadas with cilantro / Fiji apple / Meyer lemon purée / charred shishito purée / borage flower

To round off the night, pastry chef Annalise Brolaski of Sweet Organic Love provided a persimmon pavlova of spiced meringue / persimmon mousse / apple / persimmon / cranberry compote / salty sweet toasted pecans / pepitas that had diners asking for seconds.
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After the judging and tallying of scores the chefs and their sous chefs gathered in front to hear the result.  It was a very close battle, but chef RoseAna Peyron and her team took home the win including a “golden ticket” to the World Food Championships in Las Vegas, courtesy of Chef’s Roll.

the winning team

More about our generous sponsors:
Seafood sponsor – Catalina Offshore Products:
Founded nearly 40 years ago by owner Dave Rudie, Catalina Offshore Products has grown steadily into one of the region’s premier seafood purveyors and one of the largest seafood import and export companies in California.  World famous for their California uni, Catalina Offshore products have been featured by Bizarre Food America as well as numerous local and national media outlets from Vogue to the LA Times.  To learn more, please visit http://catalinaop.com/
Pork sponsor – Cook Pigs Ranch:
Cook Pigs Ranch has been in operation in Julian, California since 2012.  Owned by Krys and Mike Cook who are full-time residents on the ranch, they pride themselves on running an operation that is small, by intent, fully sustainable and self-contained.  Cook’s pigs live in large outdoor pens, where they are allowed to roam and pasture as desired.  No hormones or non-natural supplements are used to speed-up the pigs’ growth process, allowing them to grow at their own speed in the beautiful and peaceful environment which Cook Pigs Ranch provides.  To learn more, please visit http://www.cookpigs.com/
Produce sponsor – Specialty Produce:
Located in San Diego, Specialty Produce (SP) is a family owned and operated food service and retail produce supplier with over twenty years of experience. Specialty Produce carries a full line of produce and many non-produce products, most catalogued in their online encyclopedia.  Products may be delivered 7 days a week by the positive and vibrant SP team.  To learn more, please visit http://www.specialtyproduce.com/
Wine & olive oil sponsor – We Olive La Jolla:
We Olive is the premier retailer of California extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, gourmet foods and small production wine.  Their La Jolla location, which debuted in early 2011, is the first We Olive to expand beyond premium California olive oils and feature an ocean view wine bar showcasing small production California wines, local craft beers, and a menu of olive oil inspired small plates.  We Olive’s goal is to educate their guests on the health benefits and exceptional quality of California olive oils and wine.  To learn more, please visit http://weolive.com/
More about our judges and host/emcee:

left to right: Andrew Spurgin, Tommy Gomes, Bibi Kasrai, William Bradley
left to right: Andrew Spurgin, Tommy Gomes, Bibi Kasrai, William Bradley

William Bradley is the culinary director and executive chef of Addison at the Grand Del Mar.  He is also the culinary director of the newly opened Bijou French Bistro in La Jolla.  Chef Bradley has won numerous awards and accolades including the Robb Report’s Culinary Masters award in 2014. To learn more about him, visit his Chef’s Roll profile: https://chefsroll.com/williambradley
Andrew Spurgin is a 35+ year catering industry professional based in Southern California.  He offers bespoke event design and menu consulting nationally to caterers, chefs, restaurants and hotels.  Some of his clients include: Gucci, Neiman Marcus, and Audi. Andrew has been recognized by San Diego Magazine as “Caterer of the Year” for 7 consecutive years from 2004-2010 and has garnered many awards throughout his career.  To learn more about him, visit his Chef’s Roll profile: https://chefsroll.com/chefspurgin
Tommy Gomes is the fishmonger for Catalina Offshore Products. A native San Diegan whose family settled here in 1892, Tommy comes from a long line of professional fishermen.  His experience has given him deep knowledge of the industry and he’s become a leading voice in seafood education.  He landed on the list of San Diego Magazine’s “50 People to Watch in 2011” and has served fresh seafood to Bizarre Foods’ Andrew Zimmern.   To learn more about him, please visit: http://catalinaop.com/fish-market/our-fishmonger
Bibi Kasrai is the founder of Harvard Cookin’ Girl School and a chef in her own right. To learn more about her, please visit: https://chefsroll.com/BibiKasrai
Special thanks:
Thank you to our photographer Noushin Nourizadeh, you may view more photos of the night that she took here: http://noushin.smugmug.com/Food-Photography/Chefs-Roll-at-HCG/
Thank you to our videographer O Dubois, you may view some photos he took of the event here: https://mindsoule.exposure.co/chefs-roll-presents
The video will be posted here when editing is complete!
Thank you to Harvard Cookin’ Girl School for hosting and to all the volunteers that helped out and made the night a success!

OUR SPONSORS

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