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4 | Baja, Mexico

On July 25, 2015 Chef’s Plate, the ultimate traveling cooking competition, headed south of the border to the Valle de Guadalupe in Baja, Mexico. Often called the “Napa of Mexico”, those in the know have been privy to its unique character that gives it a flavor of its own. Three of Baja’s top chefs cooked whole lambs fresh from the farms of El Mogor served family style to 170 guests.

In addition, each chef nominated a young chef to participate in our live culinary competition where they prepared 3 dishes for our esteemed panel of judges.


Three of Baja’s top chefs (Drew Deckman, Miguel Angel Guerrero and Benito Molina) cooked whole lambs fresh from the farms of El Mogor served family style to 170 guests. In addition, each nominated a young chef (Fabiola Aceves, Karla Navarro and Alfredo Perez) to participate in our live culinary competition where they prepared 3 dishes for our esteemed panel of judges including Natalia Badan, Eater editor Candice Woo, Sommelier Pedro Poncelis Jr, Chef Rob Ruiz and Chef/Sommelier Mauricio Sanchez. Chef Kurt Metzger served as technical judge. They were judged on taste, presentation, creativity and how well their dishes paired with the wines of Mogor Badan. The winner was Fabiola Aceves who received a Nomiku immersion circulator and a “Golden Ticket” to the World Food Championships where she has the chance to compete for $100,000.

Champion Fabiola Aceves’ winning courses

beet salad
Beet salad: Turnip and garlic pure / Pickled and roasted beets / Poached quail egg / Lemon and vanilla vinaigrette / Turnip and basil pesto
Rabbit Duo
Rabbit Duo: Rabbit legs in achiote / white beans pure / pickled onions / cilantro Grilled rack and loin / white beans / Papaloquelite
Lamb
Lamb: Eggplant pure / Grilled rack and fillet / Cherry confit / Moronga vinaigrette

Five of the valley’s top wineries (Lomita, Monte Xanic, Viñas de Garza, Lechuza Vineyards and Aborigen) provided wine and Agua Mala, one of Baja’s best craft brewers, poured beer all night long. Pierde Almas offered several of their exceptional and unique mezcals that many guests enjoyed around the bonfire to end the night. Thanks to Chef Andrew Spurgin for being MC and to Baja Wine+Food for organizing transportation down from San Diego for many of the guests. Thanks to Rob Forsythe for photography and Sam Wells for videography.
Check out Chef’s Roll Food Blogger Carlos Walther-Meade’s account of the night over on his PS I Love San Diego blog.
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Thank you to our sponsors for Chef’s Plate 4:

deckmans

aguamala


aborigen

lechuza

lomita

montexanic

vinasdegarza





Greenvelope

World Food Championships