The Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series, a single-elimination tournament highlighting the best of the state’s food, agriculture, and culinary talent, has named a winning team for its local Raleigh, North Carolina, series. Team Mirepoix made up of three chefs from Apex, Cary, and Wake Forest, brought home the title. Team Mirepoix defeated Team Will Work For Food from Pinehurst in the final dinner event.
The finale challenged the chef teams to use two featured ingredients, strip loin, short ribs, flank steak, and ground chuck from Certified Angus Beef and fresh blackberries from Whitfield Farms in Newton Grove. Team Mirepoix is made up of chefs Franz Propst, executive chef at Peak City Grill & Bar; Ryan Summers, chef at Chef's Palette Restaurant and Bar in Cary; and Tom Halik, chef and proprietor at Main Street Grille Café & Bakery in Wake Forest. The team of chefs served up the highest scoring dish of the night and won over the crowd’s stomachs with the fifth course. The picture perfect dessert was Hazelnut Tulip, Blackberry Mousse with rose jelly glaze, blackberry—tarragon jam filled brioche pillow topped with local roasted North Carolina peaches.
“What a night. It has been a long week, but my team and I have had so much fun throughout each intense dinner,” Chef Propst says. “We came in not really knowing what to expect, but the more we competed, the more we came together as a team and with each battle we kept redefining our mission for the evening. In the end we just did what we do and had a great time.”
As part of the Raleigh series winnings, the team took home $2,000 in cash and prizes, and each member received a handcrafted knife by Ironman Forge, an autographed cookbook by master French baker Lionel Vatinet of La Farm Bakery and the coveted “Red Chef Jacket” provided by ALSCO. Additionally, Team Mirepoix will move on to the Battle of Champions statewide finale in November where they will compete against other winners from across North Carolina.
“The Raleigh finale dinner battle was dish to dish throughout the night, really making it a highly competitive night,” says Jimmy Crippen, Competition Dining Series founder and host. “Both competitors were truly chef dream teams and each came together to create some remarkable dishes. It was an incredible sight. Ultimately, Team Mirepoix caught the attention of everyone’s taste buds, especially with their dessert course, taking home a well-deserved win.”
Every Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series dinner event includes two chef teams battling it out, each preparing three courses centered on a featured North Carolina ingredient that is revealed only an hour before they start cooking that day. Ticketed guests get in on the action, savoring a full-service, six-course meal without knowing which chef prepared which plate. Unlike any other cooking competition, attendees vote on each dish using their smart phone, and ultimately help determine who moves on to the next round and who goes home.