Las Vegas, July 22 2002 — The winner has been named in the first annual S.Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef competition at Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas. Joncarl Lachman from The Institute of Culinary Education (ICE®) in New York City took the grand prize as the chef displaying the most potential star power. This special weekend event involved a panel of celebrity chefs, food journalists and media experts who shared their knowledge with the contestants on what makes the difference between a great cook and a famous chef. It culminated in a thrilling cook-off at Charlie Palmer's Aureole restaurant in Mandalay Bay, during which each contestant was given an identical market basket and just 90 minutes to prepare an entrée using these ingredients.
Joncarl Lachman who graduated from ICE® in May 2002, prepared an impressive creation of Seared Salmon on a Summer Risotto Cake with Fennel Four Ways, Sautéed Spinach, garnished with Fresh Potato Chips. After training at ICE®, Joncarl took an externship and then full-time position at Inside Restaurant, a bistro in New York City's Greenwich Village opened by highly regarded chef Ann Rosensweig. His upcoming three-year plan is to move to Ohio and open his own restaurant.
As the contest winner, Joncarl receives a trip to the Italian Culinary Institute for Foreigners (ICIF) in Italy, $1000 cash, a 10 piece set of Cuisinart Multiclad Cookware, a professional bar blender from Waring, and two round-trip first-class tickets from National Airlines. First runner-up was Andre Seibald of Johnson & Wales University, and second runner-up prize went to Nathan Redcloud Bates of Western Culinary Institute.
Top culinary schools from around the country were invited by S.Pellegrino sparkling natural mineral water to submit their best graduate of the year to participate. A list of all contestants is provided below.
The contest judges were:
• Charlie Palmer (Chef/Owner, Aureole at Mandalay Bay)
• Kerry Simon (Executive Chef, Simon's at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas)
• Nick Stellino (Chef and Host of Nick Stellino's Family Kitchen on PBS)
• Patricia Dailey (Editor-in-Chief, Restaurants & Institutions)
• Bill Rice (Food Columnist, Chicago Tribune)
• Steve Dolinsky (Host of CLTV's Good Eating)
• Elizabeth Blau (Restaurant consultant)
The contestants were:
• David Marshall (California Culinary Academy)
• Anukul N. Hampton (California School of Culinary Arts)
• Janet Ryan (Culinary Institute of America)
• Joncarl Lachman (The Institute of Culinary Education)
• Andre Siebald (Johnson & Wales University)
• Anthony Ferri (New York Restaurant School)
• Nathan Redcloud Bates (Western Culinary Institute)
• Nikki Schiebel (New England Culinary Institute)
The Institute of Culinary Education (ICE®) is New York City's award-winning center for culinary education. Founded in 1975 by Peter Kump, the school offers highly regarded 8- to 12-month career training programs in Culinary Arts, Pastry & Baking Arts, Culinary Management and Hospitality Management. With an intensive curriculum, dedicated Chef Instructors, a strong record in externship placements and a clear entrepreneurial focus, ICE is widely regarded as a great pathway to begin or continue a culinary career. ICE also runs the largest program of hands-on recreational cooking classes and wine education courses in the country, with more than 26,000 enthusiasts taking any of the 1,500 classes offered each year. In 2008, ICE was named the International Association of Culinary Professionals' (IACP) Culinary School of the Year and a School of Distinction by the ACCSCT in 2006. ICE's 42,000 square-foot facility is open seven days and nights a week, 350 days a year and is located at 50 W. 23rd Street, New York, NY 10010. More information can be found at www.iceculinary.com.