Ommegang Hop Chef Competition - Philadelphia

Ommegang Hop Chef Competition - Philadelphia

HOP CHEF is Brewery Ommegang's nationally acclaimed chef competition, nurturing the community of beer & food lovers that sit beer at the head of the table. A collection of hand selected chefs are challenged to showcase their imaginative pairing skills, using Brewery Ommegang's Belgian style ales to create a signature pairing dish.

Ales are sipped, plates are cleaned and judges deliberate as HOP CHEF creates a fun & approachable event for a community of beer lovers & foodies alike.

  • 2013 Finals: August 2-4 in Cooperstown, NY

Hop Chef Philadelphia Results

Nick Macri

Winning Chef: Nick Macri, Southwalk
with "Hennipen-Cured Coppa, Hennipen and Ginger Pickled Chiles, Grains of Paradise Bread Crumbs, Hennepin "ballpark nuts" and Orange and Coriander Sauce"

Biography:
Nick Macri grew up in Toronto, Canada to Italian immigrant parents who made everything from scratch, something he strives to do every day at Beneluxx, especially with their charcuterie goods. A soccer scholarship at Drexel brought Chef Macri to Philadelphia, but a vibrant food scene and the opportunity to work at high-profile restaurants like Osteria (under Jeff Michaud) and FARMiCia (under Kevin Klaus) kept him in the city with his wife and dog.

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Yun Fuentes

People's Choice Winning Chef: Yun Fuentes, JG Domestic
with "Serrano Ham-wrapped Duck Arepa with an Ommegang Rare Vos Reduction"

Biography:
Yun Fuentes's first industry job—as a Hamburglar costume-clad McDonald's birthday attendant—wasn't exactly glamorous. And though his second saw him arm deep in suds as a dishwasher, it got him into the kitchen, where he proved himself an able cook. Moving from the dish basin to the stove, Fuentes realized just how much he had to learn. And that initial spark of curiosity fueled his ascent in the industry.

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Hop Chef Philadelphia Contestants

Yun Fuentes

Chef: Yun Fuentes, JG Domestic

Biography:
Yun Fuentes's first industry job—as a Hamburglar costume-clad McDonald's birthday attendant—wasn't exactly glamorous. And though his second saw him arm deep in suds as a dishwasher, it got him into the kitchen, where he proved himself an able cook. Moving from the dish basin to the stove, Fuentes realized just how much he had to learn. And that initial spark of curiosity fueled his ascent in the industry.

See Full Bio

 

Nick Macri

Chef: Nick Macri, Southwalk

Biography:
Nick Macri grew up in Toronto, Canada to Italian immigrant parents who made everything from scratch, something he strives to do every day at Beneluxx, especially with their charcuterie goods. A soccer scholarship at Drexel brought Chef Macri to Philadelphia, but a vibrant food scene and the opportunity to work at high-profile restaurants like Osteria (under Jeff Michaud) and FARMiCia (under Kevin Klaus) kept him in the city with his wife and dog.

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Pat Szoke

Chef: Pat Szoke,The Industry

Biography:
A protégé of Marc Vetri, Pat Szoke is swiftly earning his own laurels for his innovative approach at the Industry, the aptly named Philadelphia gastropub where local chefs and restaurateurs flock during their time off. This delightful brunch will highlight chef Szoke's whimsical, modern twists on familiar comfort fare. On Sundays, chef Patrick Szoke offers a "staff meal" special, re-creating for public consumption the sustaining meal he prepares for coworkers. Elsewhere his cooking is built around dishes for a more adventurous crowd, like curried pork rinds and lamb neck gravy with ricotta.

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Lucio Palazzo

Chef: Lucio Palazzo, La Calaca Feliz

Biography:
Lucio Palazzo is Chef de Cuisine at La Calaca Feliz in the Fairmount neighborhood of Philadelphia. He is also Executive Chef of the soon to open Taqueria Feliz in Manayunk. He is a student of all aspects of Mexican cuisine, inspired by its bold flavors, vibrant colors, and rich history. Lucio draws from his love of travel and culture to present modern dishes with a profound respect for Mexican tradition. Prior to Calaca, Lucio cooked at Xochitl, Zahav, Percy Street Barbecue, James, Washington Square, Pumpkin, and Brasserie Perrier. He has participated in four restaurant openings, three of which received "3-bell, Excellent" reviews from The Philadelphia Inquirer. Lucio also cooked at the James Beard House in December 2010. In addition to cooking, Lucio enjoys cycling, coffee, and beer.

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Eli Kulp

Chef: Eli Kulp, Fork

Biography:
Eli Kulp had already committed to a life in the industry when he enrolled at the Culinary Institute of America in 2003. He had starting cooking professionally at 14 and knew he needed the refinement and skills CIA had to offer. After graduating in 2005, Kulp made the natural move to New York City, where he cooked at Italian Casa Lever before working under Rising Star Chef Josh DeChellis at Fonda del Sol. Kulp returned to Italian cooking at Del Posto. While working there with Chef Mark Ladner, something clicked for Kulp. He grew as a leader in the kitchen, and the philosophies behind the food pushed him to develop his own style.

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Mike Deganis

Chef: Mike Deganis