56 The NaTioNal CuliNary review • Sep Tember/oCTober 2018
above, CloCKwiSe From Top leFT: 1) & 2) Spirit of aloha award recipients gathered onstage at
the president’s Grand ball; the awards, right. 3) iron Chef masaharu morimoto deconstructed a huge
tuna at Thursday’s closing general session.
oppoSi Te, Top To bo TTom: 1) wednesday’s general session keynote was maneet Chauhan of
Chopped with a fascinating discussion of how ethnic food found its place in american cuisine.
2) attendees enjoy one of the many educational seminars and demonstrations offered during the
convention. 3) New orleanian Toya boudy treated her fellow chefs to an inspiring lesson on how to go
with the flow without losing the essence of who you are.
2018 CooK. CraFT. CreaTe. aCF NaTioNal CoNveNTioN & Show roundup
there would a wild card element to the Student
Team National Competition, increasing the
number of teams from five to six.
Tuesday’s Young Chefs Night featured Jeremy
Fogg of Emeril’s Restaurant demonstrating
plating techniques with an additional focus on
taking social media photos. And, four young
chefs took part in a lively Beef Quick Fire
Challenge, sponsored by Beef. It’s What’s for
dinner. The winner was Charlett Thelin, an
ACF national member, who received a complete
knife kit, a sous vide circulator and $500 in
beef from Kansas City Steak Company. The
other finalists received engraved knives. Also
Tuesday evening, the American Academy of
Chefs gathered to welcome new inductees and
congratulate AAC Fellows receiving awards at
the annual AAC Reception and Dinner.
Seminars, competitions and keynotes
As the week continued, attendees explored
a host of topics from plant-forward cuisines and
the management of evolving foodservice needs to the basic methods
of cannabis extraction through sous-vide. There were walking tours
around the Big Easy to explore the city’s extensive food history
and craft beer scene. A two-day trade show highlighted the best of
the culinary world, with sponsors and exhibitors sharing the latest
innovations in food, equipment and services. And on the trade-show floor, there were competitions for Student Chef of the Year,
Pastry Chef of the Year, Baron H. Galand Culinary Knowledge
Bowl, Student Team and Chef of the Year.
Three excellent keynotes graced this year’s general sessions.
John Folse, owner/executive chef, Chef John Folse & Company,
Gonzales, Louisiana, was Monday’s opening keynote with
Spirit of aloha awards