Thursday, May 19, 2011
It’s game on for Battle: Pheasant.
Six cheftestants went head-to-head in pursuit of the prestigious Gold Fork at the Pitch's annual Taste of KC at the Power & Light District last Sunday. I was very excited to be asked to sit on the judging panel alongside Beth Barden of Succotash and Marshall Roth of Dog Nuvo.
Tonight’s secret ingredient was pheasant, and the chefs came up with some intriguing executions -- among them were pheasant meatballs, smoked pheasant, and pheasant wrapped in uncured bacon. As judges, we rated each chef’s efforts from 1 to 5 on taste, appearance and creativity.
Sampling delicious food prepared by awesome chefs -- it’s a tough job, but somehow we made it through. I think I may have tripled the amount of pheasant I've ever had in just this one sitting.
The ultimate winner was Chef Jesse Vega of the Guadalupe Center, who served us what he described as his take on chicken and waffles. It was delicious comfort food. Seriously, I couldn’t stop eating it.
That said, the competition was very close. Just one point separated the chefs in the top three from one another, which in addition to Vega also included Eric Carter of the Drum Room and Charles d’Ablaing of Chaz on the Plaza at the Raphael.
Big thanks to the Pitch for inviting me to participate. Note to self in case I’m asked back to judge again next year: bring Tupperware for leftovers. With all the talent that was on display here, I could've eaten pheasant for days.