MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif --
The winners of the competition were Shariff Queenan and Beto Meza, both civilian chefs aboard the Combat Center.
“This competition gives the chefs a chance to bring their skills front and center,” said Master Sgt. Marianna Martinez, food service technician. “It also gives them a chance to show skills they really don’t get a chance to show when they are working together on a regular day.”
The competition started with seven teams. The first day of the competition, the chefs participated in a test that focused on basic culinary knowledge. After the test, the chefs competed in a jeopardy-style competition, which also tested them in basic culinary information. The top three teams earned a chance to compete in a cooking portion that was timed and monitored. All chefs were all given the same ingredients and were instructed to make three different dishes. The dishes were judged on multiple factors including taste, presentation and an explanation of how it was prepared and how the ingredients were utilized.
“This is a great competition,” said Maj. Gen. David H. Berger, Combat Center Commanding General. “It not only gives these chefs a chance to show off their skills, but it gives people a chance to see that our chefs are skilled. These chefs can turn a bag of groceries into something beautiful and tasty. Not many people can do that.”