If you’ve ever wanted to be a judge on reality cooking shows such as “Iron Chef,” then you won’t want to miss the first-ever Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series. Sixty-four North Carolina chefs will compete against each other in weekly competitions, as diners help decide who will be named the grand champion. The contest kicks off with Fire on the Rock in Blowing Rock Tuesday, Jan. 31.
The department was a sponsor of the original Fire on the Rock held in 2005. This year, the department is helping the local event expand to include Fire on the Dock in Wilmington, Fire in the Triangle in Raleigh and Fire in the Triad in Greensboro and Winston-Salem.
“The concept fits in well with our established programs,” NCDA&CS marketing specialist Tim Parrish said. “It’s a great way to showcase fresh local product and the chefs that prepare it.”
Each region will host a single-elimination bracket series featuring 16 area chefs, and each round will be held at a neutral restaurant. Two chefs will compete in each round and prepare a six-course meal using a secret locally grown ingredient revealed to them by the department less than an hour before the competition. Diners, culinary experts and celebrity judges will determine which chef advances to the next round of competition.
Winners from each region not only receive recognition and bragging rights, but they also will receive $2,000 and a custom red chef jacket. The four regional winners will face off in a grand finale in October.
The Got to Be NC Dining Competition is sponsored by the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Pate-Dawson and Southern Foods. You can purchase your tickets for Fire on the Rock and find more details about the other regional contests at www.competitiondining.com.