Eight chefs from throughout the state of Wisconsin have been selected to compete in the 2014 Wisconsin's Taste of Elegance contest, which will be held at the Kalahari Resort and Convention Center in Wisconsin Dells on Feb. 6. The Taste of Elegance features Wisconsin's top chefs who will prepare an original pork recipe while competing for $2,000 in cash prizes.
A reception featuring these chefs will begin at 6:15 p.m. The public is invited to experience the flavor and quality of foods produced by the state's farmers and chefs. Tickets for the Taste of Elegance are $20 each. Attendees can sample menu specialties from chefs who will be competing for the title of Chef Par Excellence, top prize of $750, and a complimentary trip from the National Pork Board to the Culinary Institute of America, Greystone, CA.
The Superior Chef will receive $500, and $250 will be awarded to the Premium Chef. A 'Best Use of Soy' Award, with a prize of $250, will be presented, where the competing chefs will feature soy accompaniments with their pork entrée. In addition, those in attendance at the reception will select their favorite entrée, and a $250 People's Choice Award will be presented.
The Taste of Elegance was created to encourage pork menuing in a creative and non-traditional manner. Judging is based on taste, appearance and originality.
The chefs who will be competing in the contest are:
■ Chef Paul Cummings, Gallaghers, Ripon;
■ Chef Vincent Franz, Wild Canyon Café, Wisconsin Dells;
■ Chef Matthew Baier, Dream Dance Steak, Milwaukee;
■ Chef Nicholas Bijak, Norton's, Green Lake;
■ Chef Martha Moser, Father Fats, Stevens Point;
■ Chef Jason Demers, Christians Bistro, Plover;
■ Chef Kurt Wagner, Wisconsin Machine Shed, Pewaukee; and
■ Chef Craig Bianco, Double Cut at the Kalahari Resort, Wisconsin Dells.
The Taste of Elegance not only provides an elegant occasion to highlight the increasing popularity of pork on America's menus, but also helps to strengthen chefs' preference for pork as a flavorful and versatile meat. Since its inception, the national program has evolved into over twenty regional competitions, with more than 4,000 chefs participating.
The Taste of Elegance is sponsored by Johnsonville Sausage; Pork Checkoff; Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board; and Wisconsin Pork Association. The event is held in conjunction with the Corn/Soy/Pork Expo, which takes place on Feb. 6-7.
Contact the Wisconsin Pork Association at 608-723-7551 to order tickets.
To learn more about soybeans and their uses for livestock feed, soybean oil and soyfoods, visit the Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board website at www.wisconsinsoybean.org.
For pork recipes and cooking tips, along with more about the Wisconsin Pork Association, visit www.wppa.org.
For more information about the Wisconsin Corn/Soy Expo, visit the website at www.cornsoyexpo.org.