Last night, two ICE students competed in the ninth annual S. Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef competition. Eight students from the New York–area competed in the Northeast Regional yesterday at Astor Center. Culinary students from schools across the US and Canada compete in a series of regional competitions for a chance to go to the finals in Napa Valley in March.
In addition to the two ICE students, the students came from the French Culinary Institute, Culinary Institute of America and Lincoln Technical Institute. Judging were Shaun Hergatt of Sho, Fabrizio Carro of Quattro, Massimo Carbone of Brio, Dino Arpaia of Cellini, Arlyn Blake of the FOOD Calendar, Antoinette Bruno of StarChefs and Nilani Rafferty Trent of EatingVine.
Each student had two hours to prepare their dish before serving to the panel, as well as the guests in attendance. First up in the kitchen was ICE student Jennifer Ferguson, who made Duck Two Ways with Brussels Sprout Hash, Cauliflower Purée and Port Wine. Later, ICE student Jonathan A. Pommerenk served his dish of Za’atar-Lamb with Saag-Aloo Purée, Eggplant Peperonata and Fried Paneer. In the end, it was an extremely close race. Neither Jennifer or Jonathan took home the top prize, but we are still proud of them and the dishes they made. We’re already looking forward to next year!