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September 10, 2006 - American Institute of Wine and Food's 8th Annual Greatest Caesar Salad in Denver Competition

What: Caesar Salad Competition

Where: The Walnut Foundry, 3002 Walnut Street, Denver

When: September 10, 2006

Time: 6:00 p.m.

Ticket Prices: Members: $30, Guests: $40

Beneficiary: American Institute of Wine and Food Scholarship Fund

Gala Chairperson(s): Mary Kirby

Founders: Jay Dee Peterson Boat, Leo & Linda Goto

Attire: Casual

Board of Directors: Kate Bailey, Morey Hecox, John Imbergamo, Mary Kirby, Elizabeth Williams, John Salamanski, Karen Sims, Jay Dee Peterson Boat, Leo & Linda Goto, Ron Ferrendelli, Bette Smith, Kendra Anderson, Kerrin Degnan, Steve Gross, Jim Larsen, Rosemary Laurita, Shellie Kark.

Blacktie Photos by: Shawna Robbins

 The New Champion, Chef Troy Guard from Ocean
The New Champion, Chef Troy Guard from Ocean

The Competitors:
Defending Champion: Chef Alec Schrader, Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House
Chef Mark Cina, Udi's Bread Bistro
Chef Troy Guard, nine75 and Ocean
Chef Tyler Wiard, Elway's
Chef Elise Wiggins, Panzano
Bridget Hart, Cook Street School of Fine Cooking
Jon Kuit, Johnson and Wales

When you walked into the Walnut Foundry there was a aroma of garlic, anchovies and excitement. Everyone came with empty stomachs ready to be filled with the best Caesar Salads in Denver. No one could imagine that there would be so many distinct and different variations on what I thought was such a simple salad. Until this competition I thought a Caesar Salad was just some romaine lettuce, caesar dressing and perhaps a crouton or two, I was unexpectantly surprised by what the chefs had put together. The competing chefs had added everything from oranges and tomatoes to ham and olives, making these salads a work of art. None of the salads tasted or looked the same.

While people were recovering from the Caesar Salad induced food coma, they were able to bid on amazing silent auction items, including a 6L bottle of Cab to wine tasting events and special dinners. These auction items were truly for the food and wine lover in everyone.

After everyone had their fill of Caesar Salad and had munched on some great desserts, the moment everyone was waiting for came around. It was a tough competition, but in the end Ocean Chef Troy Guard won the title.

All of the money raised through the event and the silent auction went to a scholarship fund for culinary students at Johnson & Wales University. Who knows, maybe in the next few years we'll see the winners competing in this competition.

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