We were of course in attendance at Culinary Fight Club for the Street Food Fight. As blogger brand ambassadors, we are thrilled to cover every fight. This one was a little more exciting for us because Street Food is easy to chow down on with big flavors.
Concord 55 is a great venue with indoor and outdoor spaces. This time we had 6 chefs competing. As usual they had 60 minutes to cook for the judges and the audience. We ate a variety of Chicago Street Foods, but the winners were Chef Mildred Ayala and Chef Nicholas Saponaro (Taster’s Choice).
I heard a lot of audience members complaining about the results, however, you gotta realize that some chefs serve it smart. They give their best to the judges and not to the crowd because it is hard to make everything you cook in 60 minutes perfect for such a large number of people. Personally, we aren’t fans of the Chicago hot dog, but I do believe that a lot of the dishes served weren’t exactly Chicago 100%. I don’t think I’d find all those bites on every street, however I’m lucky that Culinary Fight Club is composed of foodies. We tend to eat everything anywhere we can find tasty food.
The facts are that a chef missed out on ingredients after mishearing the rules. Competitions are brutal and the Cheferee doesn’t pull any punches. You aren’t allowed to break the rules. Even if the Cheferee decides to change them up. After all life in a kitchen isn’t all pork belly and lobster tails. Sometimes you just have to work with what you have. I did hear that Chef David Rolon made delicious vegetarian rolls, but he didn’t have enough to feed the entire crowd. So he couldn’t win taster’s choice because few people tasted his dish. We didn’t get any of it and we even started gathering samples mid-judging. Culinary Fight Club is a real challenge for any chef. Each fight presents another chef that does well under pressure.
Honestly, I feel like the crowd gets so invested in each fight that every single time I hear outcries that the judges must be wrong. I think that this just speaks to how passionate all the foodies are. In the end, I think the crowd gets that tunnel vision. Unlike a televised competition, Culinary Fight Club is all over the place. There is no way that you can watch everything all at once. Although moments like the photo above are what Culinary Fight Club is all about. The team from ZED451 offered to help once the crowd grew restless at Chef James Bernstien’s table. They certainly prevented anarchy from hungry foodies wanting one more succulent bite.
Only the Cheferee is all knowing, so we must trust in him. He always delivers the proper verdict and we can’t complain with all that tasty food.
Although, once again I’m reminded that I still haven’t stopped at the Knife and Tine to try out their full menu. All the chefs are talented and this time we celebrated 2 winners.
The next Chicago Culinary Fight Club will take place in December. You can buy tickets here. Together we can find out who makes the best Chicago Sips and Bites. All taking place December 19th at the Chop Shop.