Food. Most everyone loves it, not everybody can prepare it well. In Worcester county, those restaurants that both prepare arguably the best dishes and care about promoting the art of food preparation can be found at the annual Worcester’s Best Chef competition.
This year’s competition was held at historic Mechanics Hall to an enthused crowd of both casual and serious foodies. Nearly thirty restaurants claimed their territory over two floors allowing for their chefs to prepare their signature dish to be shared to all in attendance. This year’s event was paced perfectly—especially with an exclusive VIP-hour allowing the personal attention between the chefs and attendees.
Whether supporting your favorite restaurant or looking to see what other restaurants are out there, the event provided the perfect opportunity to sample until you were uncomfortably full. While every restaurant was effective in wooing votes from the attendees, a couple restaurants stood out from their peers: voted by the judges, the Worcester’s Best Chef award was presented to Wilson Wang of BABA Sushi (runners up: Jared Calderone of Feng Asian Bistro & Hibachi and Tim Quinn of Old Sturbridge Village’s Oliver Wight Tavern). The People’s Choice Award was awarded to Mark Hawley of Flying Rhino (runners up: Wilson Wang of BABA Sushi and Brian Treitman of BT’s Smokehouse). The WXLO People’s Choice Winner was Chef Christina Ernst from Via Alto. The winner of the Iron Chef competition—where selected chefs had 20-minutes to prepare a dish with pre-selected secret ingredients—went to Tim Quinn of Old Sturbridge Village’s Oliver Wight Tavern.
WorcesterScene would like to call attention to some restaurants that presented some amazing flavors and perspective. Niche Hospitality’s The People’s Kitchen and Bocado lived up to their reputation of exemplar detail to flavors and presentation. Perfect Game seemingly came out of nowhere with an incredible version of the Slider style burger. Kai Sushi Bar and Grille‘s combination of flavors and textures to their sushi rolls left many coming for seconds and thirds. And EVO wowed everyone with their creative choice of flavors, textures, and overall preparation of their dish.
If you were unable to attend this year’s competition, be certain that next year you plan to be part of the area’s most influential event on food culture.