Monday, October 1, 2012

There Were Some Very Big Winners At The Fifth-Annual 'Chicago Gourmet'

Luis Pedroza of Benny's Chophouse during Supreme Lobster's "oyster shucking" finale at Chicago Gourmet on Sunday. (Photo: 312 Dining Diva)

The secret ingredients of the three most winning-est restaurants of Chicago Gourmet: grilled watermelon, a metallic glove and bone marrow salt.

At the kickoff Hamburger Hop event on Friday, more than 1,000 guests gathered to chow down on 15 different burgers made from chefs around the city. The judges picked Yoshi's Cafe, whose executive chef/owner Yoshi Katsumura whipped up a burger of Allen Brothers Steaks' Wagyu beef, panko-crusted fried green tomato and pickle, Asian pear jam, brie cheese and micro wasabi. It was topped with smoky Asian style BBQ sauced, presented on a poppy seed brioche bun and complemented by that grilled watermelon on the side.

Three Aces' winning burger. (Photo: Three Aces)

And Three Aces' rebel chef Matt Troost won the peoples' choice award for bringing his signature burger into the mix. It consisted of prime chuck and sirloin and ground in-house. It was topped with bacon jam, three-year-old Wisconsin white cheddar, bone marrow salt, red onion and mixed Mesclun greens on a pretzel bun. This was the first year for both chefs at the Hamburger Hop.

The other big winner of the weekend was Luis Pedroza of Benny's Chophouse. The talented line cook took home $2,000 after dominating his competitors in Supreme Lobster's "oyster shucking" finale on Sunday. And yes. He did it while wearing a metallic glove.

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