A look back at 2014 predictions

Restaurants, retail and beer: A look back at 2014 predictions

Digital Producer- Phoenix Business Journal

Looking back at my predictions for metro Phoenix’s restaurant and retail sectors, one thing is clear: I didn’t do too bad.

Without further ado…  [

Robert Bland Culinary Salon 2015 Non-Sanctioned Competition

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ACF Chef’s Association of Arizona Robert Bland Culinary Salon 2015

Non-Sanctioned Competition (Student Categories) Student Prizes Medals, Trophies and Tools

$30.00 Entry Fee Deadline for entering is January 4, 2015

East Valley Institute of Technology 1601 West Main Street, Mesa, AZ 85201-6910 January 17, 2015

 Awards and Medal Ceremony Saturday, January 17, TBD

Entry fees are non-refundable | Please include check or PO# with your registration form

Make checks payable to ACFAZ-Competition | Entrants will not be allowed to compete without proof of entry fee being paid.

All categories are $30 per each entry. | Please make a COPY of this form for your records before mailing

** If a student chooses to compete in category SK/1

Chefs Association of Arizona will supply the student with a 2-21⁄2 lb Whole Chicken




___ SK/1 Rock Cornish Game Hen, Chicken or Duck**

___ SK/2 Bone-In Pork Loin

___ SK/3 Bone-In Veal Loin or Rack

___ SK/4 Bone-In Lamb Loin or Rack

___ SK/5 Game Birds

___ SK/6 Bone-In Game

___ SK/7 Whole Rabbit

___ SK/8 Live Lobster




___ SP/1 Hot / Warm Dessert

___ SP/2 Composed Cold Dessert

Entry Form

Naturopaths Without Borders, C-CAP and ACFAZ

By LeeAnn Sharpe November 25, 2014

Naturopaths Without Borders entertained about 90 guests at the 2014 Heal-Empower-Sustain event which took place on Saturday, November 15th at a private residence of Wendy and Dr. Todd Dickerson in Phoenix, AZ. This event was the Naturopaths Without Borders’ inaugural fundraiser with proceeds benefiting their continued work providing healthcare to impoverished communities while empowering those communities through education, supporting growth and cultivating sustainable resources.

Dr. Sean Hesler and his wife Dr. Sarah Preston – Hesler pictured here with Sabrina Blonder, were excited to participate in the successful event which would allow them to continue their important work in Mexico, Haiti, and Phoenix. Dr. Hesler spoke of his work in Haiti where three full-time Haitian employees and one American doctor maintain their clinic, where 3 to 4 doctors from Phoenix have made frequent trips to treat patients. For the last four years they have engaged in medical work, teaching the people sustainable food products, improving community health and education and empowerment.

Their primary function is to advance the people’s basic understanding in how to create a healthy environment and sustainable food sources using local plants.
In Mexico and Phoenix Dr. Michelle Retz finds the experience of treating families over the years a gratifying experience.

“When you treat people who have absolutely nothing and can help them solve their health issues, they are so grateful,” Dr. Retz commented. “I have seen the entire family, the grandmother, the daughter, and the children, and now the children have grown up and are having children.”

When asked about their needs, Dr. Retz says, “Of course there is always a financial need to sustain the programs. But we also need doctors and volunteers who are willing to go and work in these areas.”

The evening was enhanced with music by Dayweather, a Silent Auction featuring jewelry, golf outings to Sedona, Disneyland Parkhopper Passes, a hot air balloon ride, autographed AZ Cardinals football, Blake Shelton guitar, and Taylor Swift autographs and more!

Students from C-CAP – Careers through Culinary Arts and the ACFAZ – American Culinary Federation Chef’s Association of Arizona prepared and served food featuring cuisine from the countries where NWB works. ACF Chef Nery Palma prepared a delicious pumpkin, carrots and garlic soup topped with sunflower seeds. He said it was a challenge staying vegan and gluten-free. The soup was delicious!

C-CAP student Jorge Ramos a Paradise Valley High School junior, help serve a papaya salad made with papaya, green onions, bell peppers, and Fresno chile, top with a lime juice, soy sauce and fish sauce dressing. They also served shrimp over rice cakes with a coconut curry sauce.

C-CAP Culinary Coordinator for the Arizona program, Nicole DeKruyter, C-CAP Alumni, organized the group of 15 students who prepared dishes with food products indigenous of the countries five regions served by Naturopaths Without Borders. She especially liked the Cold Thai Chicken Salad, inspired by her recent trip to Thailand.

For further information our contact is Michelle Retz at 480 – 213 – 0913.
Dr. Sean Hesler will be sending me additional comments via email.

ACF Chef Steven Grostick Named the 2014 World Chef Challenge Champion

logo (2)St. Augustine, Fla., November 24, 2014—Steven Grostick, of Highland, Michigan, a Food Fanatic culinary consultant chef for US Foods, Detroit, was named 2014 World Chef Challenge Champion. The tournament-style competition took place at the World Food Championships, Nov. 14–16, in Las Vegas.

Twelve professional chefs competed in the World Chef Challenge’s three preliminary competitions of recipe creation, hand skills and mystery basket. The competitors with the highest scores then advanced to the signature dish challenge where they competed for a prize package of $2,500 and a $15,000 Southern Pride smoker.

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“Food is my life and words can’t describe how it felt to win the title of 2014 World Chef Challenge Champion,” said Grostick. “I saw the competition I was up against and I knew I needed to just put my head down and cook my heart out. I was blessed to have the support of my beautiful wife and family, the American Culinary Federation, US Foods Detroit and the Food Fanatics. I can’t wait to defend my title in 2015.”

The first round was recipe creation and required the chefs to use potatoes. For this challenge, Grostick presented a kielbasa- and bacon-wrapped pork porchetta with gnocchi for the judges. He then participated in a timed skills challenge that tested the competitors on such knife cuts as dice, julienne and tourne. The final preliminary round was mystery basket and Grostick created a chorizo-smoked clam broth for the mystery ingredient halibut. After winning the skills challenge, he was selected along with two other chefs to compete in the final signature dish challenge. Grostick’s dish for the judges was a pan-roasted Cornish game hen and ballotine of thigh with prosciutto and pistachio served with olive oil smashed fingerling potatoes, butter turnips, beans and chicken jus lié. [Read more..]


5 Tips from Chef Mel Mecinas on Growing Restaurant-Quality Produce


If you hear “pumpkin spice” and think “harvest,” chances are you’ve been growing some veggies for at least a season or two. If you’re looking to take your harvest to the next level, you’re in the right place. We talked to Chef Mel Mecinas of Talavera at Scottsdale’s Four Seasons about how to improve your starter garden and harvest restaurant quality produce, like he does. [Read more..]

Local Chefs Team Up for Escoffier-Themed Dinner at POSH in Scottsdale on November 9


Known as “The Chef of Kings and the King of Chefs,” Auguste Escoffier is a legend in the culinary world. He is the father of modern French cuisine whose contributions to the world of gastronomy include establishing the brigade kitchen system, codifying the recipes for the five mother sauces, and helping to elevate cooking to a respected profession. His book Le Guide Culinaire still serves as a major reference book for chefs and home cooks alike.  [Read more..]