Unique culinary experience gives attendees opportunity to sample dynamic dishes made with pork

artsquest-logoCalling all foodies: skip cooking on October 24 and come meet your local chefs!  Held on Monday, October 24, 6 p.m., at ArtsQuest Center’s Musikfest Café, 101 Founders Way, Bethlehem, the Taste of Elegance competition lets you sample a variety of gourmet-level entrees.   At the privately judged competition, eight regional chefs compete for a $1,000 top prize and an invitation to attend the National Pork Board 2017 Pork Summit.

Open to the public from 6-8 p.m., attendees have the opportunity to meet these talented local chefs and taste their delicious pork entrees.  Visit www.SteelStacks.org/TASTE to see the Chef Profiles and order tickets.

All proceeds from the event benefit ArtsQuest, a nonprofit organization providing access to art, culture and educational programs for residents of the Lehigh Valley.

The 2016 competing chefs are:

Chef:                                        Restaurant:                                                      
Cale Beck                                   Kingfish American Bistro, Bethlehem
Michael Hoffman                        ArtsQuest Center – Aramark, Bethlehem
John Hudak                                Chef John Enterprises, Scranton
Richard McGlynn III                    LeJeune Chef Restaurant, Williamsport
Nicholas Sandt                          Culinary Experience Catering, Hellertown
Kayla Swinicki                           oKaysions Catering, Alpha, N.J.
Jeffrey Wagaman                      Saucon Valley Country Club, Bethlehem
Nate Weida                                House & Barn Restaurant, Emmaus

To highlight the caliber of the dishes prepared for this event, the 2015 Taste of Elegance first place winner Chef Cristian Gonzalez of The Hamilton Kitchen last year created a sweet potato gnocchi with pork neck ragout, pan seared pork belly, bacon black garlic foam, almond puree, crispy guanciale and cilantro.  For judging fairness, entrée descriptions for the 2016 are not provided in advance of the event.  Although the entrees are kept secret, many delicious ways to use pork will be showcased and guests will gain cooking inspiration from the event!

Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door; seating is limited so advance purchase is strongly suggested.  Admission also includes a wine sample from Franklin Hill Vineyard, with cash bar will be available.  For tickets visit www.SteelStacks.org/TASTE.

Schedule of events:

Each chef prepares a pork entrée and is awarded points for taste, appearance and originality.

  • Entrees are judged from 3:30-5 p.m.   This is closed to the media and the public.
  • Media preview from 5:30-6 p.m.  The photos of the entrees are amazing!
  • Public reception 6-8 p.m.  Doors open to ticket holders at 6 p.m. Event is limited to 150 attendees.
  • At 7:30 p.m., a press conference will be held to announce the winners, introduce chefs and judges including Sara Crawford, Director of Retail Innovation, National Pork Board.
 recipe for Chef Cristian Gonzalez’s winning entrée from the 2015 Taste of Elegance event

Recipe for Chef Cristian Gonzalez’s winning entrée from the 2015 Taste of Elegance event