The San Pellegrino "Almost Famous Chef" Competition

Today, four culinary students faced off in our professional teaching kitchens, vying for a chance to participate in the San Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition.

The winner of this Iron Chef-inspired battle - complete with "mystery baskets" - will represent ICE at the Northeast regional competition on Wednesday, January 23rd.


Students were asked to submit signature recipes as a pre-cursor to this qualifying round. The four finalists selected - Seohyung I'm, Jack Ward, Elly Soyoun Kim and Tariq Abdullah-Muhammad - were then charged with creating yet another unique dish.

Given mere hours to consider the ingredients at their disposal, the challenge was to prepare and plate an entrée consisting of a protein, two sides, a sauce and a garnish - in under two hours. Chefs Chris Gesualdi, James Briscione, Michael Handel, Andy Gold, and Virginia Monaco evaluated not only the flavor, texture and visual presentation of each dish but also the students' creativity, composure under pressure, organization and overall technique.

While all students performed exceptionally, Seohyung Im wooed the judges with her technique, preparing roasted lamb chops with truffled potatoes, sautéed swiss chard, butternut squash purée and red wine-beet sauce.

We congratulate each of these incredible students on making it to the qualifying round and wish Seohyung the best of luck as she prepares for the regional finals.


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