Cooking Show 2016 Chef Information –

Link Back to the Chef Cooking Program
us-foods Host Greg Matchett and representative for US Foods: is a former instructor at Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts, Chef Greg Matchett recently became the Culinary Director for Balfour at Riverfront Park. For the past 25 years he has risen through the ranks to become Executive Chef and Corporate Executive Chef in a variety of industry sectors and states. He has served as Executive Chef for sitting and former US Presidents Barack Obama, Gerald Ford, George H. W. Bush, and Bill Clinton. He has also presided over the 2008 Democratic National Convention, NASCAR races, Chicago and Colorado Wine Association dinners, four international golf tournaments, one US Open golf tournament, World Cup Ski Classic, Microsoft World Partners Convention, and events for celebrities including: Wolfgang Puck, Oprah Winfrey and Bill Gates. Chef Matchett trained under master chefs and the best leaders in the industry and is a member of the American Culinary Federation.

Host Executive Chef Greg Matchett

greg-m

Pastry Chef Amy Dewitt Representing Auguste Escoffier School of Cunlinary Arts: Amy DeWitt was born, raised and educated in South Florida, where she adopted a high regard and affection for tropical flair and flavor. A BS in Psychology from the University of Florida led to a career selling residential real estate in Miami, but nosing around in people’s kitchens started to have more of an allure. She turned to baking, refining her skills at Johnson & Wales University where she graduated top of her class with a degree in Baking and Pastry Arts. Chef DeWitt moved to Boulder and opened The Cream Puffery Pastry Shop and Café in 2001, winning numerous awards and a loyal following for her French-Latin American fusion cream puffs and pastries. Chef DeWitt was the opening Pastry Chef for the prestigious St. Julien Hotel and Spa in downtown Boulder. She was then the pastry chef instructor at the Culinary School of the Rockies teaching the professional pastry program. One of her favorite quotes, “You teach best that which you need to learn most”, from Richard Bach’s Illusions rang true. Teaching the craft of baking prompted a more profound level of knowing and infused new life into her art. Dewitt did a year stint as the pastry chef at the renowned four-diamond Sonnenalp Resort of Vail, before returning to CSR, now the August Escoffier School of Culinary Arts. She was honored to cook at James Beard House twice, in 2007 and 2009.  She specializes in intricate, detailed finish work for high-end occasion cakes, classical French pastries and Latin-European fusion desserts.

Pastry Chef Amy DeWitt

redbird Chef Jason Morse representing Red bird Farms: Red Bird Farms is a privately held family company that has been under the same ownership for over 20 years.  Family values are the center of Red Bird’s philosophy for a successful business. Raised without the use of antibiotics and fed no animal byproducts, ever. These buzz words have been emerging on menus and storefronts. It’s become such an important issue that politicians, schools, and news networks have all taken notice: we don’t want antibiotics in our food! As consumers become hungry for honest, safe, and healthy products, Red Bird Farms has been happy to serve it. In a world full of junk, we are proud to offer this select, anti-biotic free poultry. If you don’t see Red Bird Farms at your local grocer, bug the butcher, for health’s sake!

Chef Jason Morse

Chef Preston Phillips representing gRind kitchen + watering hole: At 24 years of age, chef Preston Phillips is likely the youngest new restaurant owner in Denver. His eatery, Grind Kitchen and Watering Hole, opened at 300 Fillmore Street in an updated garden level space that last housed Pikkas Peruvian Cuisine and Pisco Bar. Phillips added contemporary and industrial elements to the space, including reclaimed cedar barn wood with threaded metal roads.  Coming from a family that owned quick-serve restaurants in Birmingham, Alabama, Phillips went to culinary school in Tampa then headed for Colorado where he first landed at Alfalfa’s Market. He most recently served as sous chef at 24 Carrot Bistro in Erie.  “Everyone has a daily grind,” the chef says, talking about naming his business. “It is the daily grind of work, family, kids. For us in restaurants it is the hospitality grind. I liked the play on words – we are grinding our own meats and we are also grinding back there constantly to make sure that we give our guests the best experience.”

Chef Preston Phillips

Pat Gruber representing Continental Sausage makers of CharcutNuvo:  Continental Sausage’s mission is to instill consumer confidence by delivering outrageously delicious products that better the world through humane practices and organic & natural ingredients, fueled by a proud group of connected employees positively contributing to society.  Ultimately, the success of Continental Sausage is a result of our commitment to devoted employees, exceptional customer experience, sustainability and ethical business practices.  www.charcutnuvo.com

Pat Gruber

pat-gruber-website

mortons Chef Bob Wiltshire representing Morton’s The Steakhouse: Located in the heart of Lower Downtown, Morton’s The Steakhouse Denver serves only the finest quality foods, featuring USDA prime-aged beef, fresh fish and seafood, handpicked produce, delicious appetizers and elegant desserts. Adjacent to many of Denver’s sports venues, shops and local businesses, Morton’s provides guests with an atmosphere of rich mahogany, crisp linens and superior service combined with superior product and dedicated people. It’s the perfect destination for Bar Bites after a long day or before the game, or for an exceptional dining experience.  www.mortons.com/denver/

Chef Bob Wiltshire

Bob Wiltshire

Chef Michael DeGiovanni Representing Morning Star Senior Living:  Chef DeGiovanni is a graduate of the Art Institute of Colorado Culinary Arts Program. He served as past president of the ACF Colorado Chefs Association and was awarded the National ACF Chapter of the Year in 2007. The Colorado Chefs Association, a chapter of the American Culinary Federation, is an association of Chefs, Cooks, Baking and Pastry Professionals, Purveyors, Producers and other Culinary Professionals. Today he is an instructor for the ACFCCA culinary apprentice program and serves on the Board of Directors as Treasurer. Additionally, Chef DeGiovanni is the Executive Chef at MorningStar Senior Living.

Executive Chef Mike DeGiovanni

Kini Christie representing My Mom’s Pie: Growing up in a family of pie makers, even as a child, Kini was the go to daughter for making pies. At a white painted kitchen table, Kini’s grandmother, Hazel, taught her and her sisters how to make pie using only a teacup from the cupboard to measure the ingredients. They would pick fresh cherries, apples, and peaches in the summer orchards of Delta County Colorado to make their pies. According to her two older sisters Kini made the best crust, and was elected chief pie maker in the family.  As an adult, Kini became renowned for her pies among her friends and the community. She was frequently encouraged to turn her art into a commercial venture. The idea for starting a pie company had been with her throughout her life so in September of 2008, Kini, husband chef Jeff, and their grown children, Jim, Erica, and Caleb joined together to implement her lifelong vision of making the highest quality homemade pie available, thus, My Mom’s Pie was born! From their first commercial order (an event for 500 people, where the pies were a huge hit), to their first grocery store sale (in response to an emergency plea for Christmas Eve pies for Niwot Market whose supplier failed), it was clear their desserts filled an unmet desire for old fashioned pies. My Mom’s Pie has been fulfilling those desires ever since.  Kini has been featured on the Gabby Gourmet show, Channel 7 news, and the Taste of Colorado. Her bakery is located in Niwot, Colorado where she, Jeff, and their team make over 5,000 pies per month and love serving the Front Range Community with fresh homemade pie.  www.mmpies.com

Kini Christie

Chef Amy Huffman representing Salted Sweets: the founder and chief pastry designer for Salted Sweets, a custom dessert and cake company.  Originally from Southern California and she moved to Colorado in 2012 to find her culinary niche.  She has worked at high end country clubs, restaurants and resorts, making me no stranger to the idea of “nothing but perfection” a mindset that is the fundamental drive behind each dessert I create.  Her top priority with each cake, cookie, pie or dessert I bring to life is that it is not only beautiful and full of flavor, but is made with as much local, organic, and sustainable product as possible. www.saltedsweets.com

Amy Huffman

amy-huffman-salted-sweets

Innovation Chef Jenna Johnson representing The Epicurean Group: Since the age of 14, Johansen has been passionate about pursuing her dream of becoming a chef. She earned two separate degrees, one in Restaurant and Resort Management from Colorado State University and a Culinary Degree (summa cum laude) from Johnson & Wales University. Johansen is well known in the food industry locally and nationally with her participation in many premier food events in Colorado and nationally, including the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, the James Beard House in NYC and many more. She honed her skills in the kitchens of Denver and Boulder, working with many great chefs along the way. She was the chef/owner of dish restaurant in the Vail Valley, and you might also recognize her as one of 12 professional chefs who competed on Bravo’s global culinary competition, Around the World in 80 Plates in 2012. You can find her recipes in the new LCA cookbook, “Fifteen Chefs”, in Denver & Boulder Chef’s Table: Extraordinary Recipes From The Colorado Front Range & Colorado’s Top Brewers. Jenna Johansen joined Epicurean Catering in 2013 with a brand new position of Innovation Chef. She works closely with the culinary and event design teams and develops new, creative concepts and refresh the presentation of tried and true dishes. She brings a fresh perspective and the attitude that restaurant quality food is possible in any venue. Her passion for food, philanthropy, and 25+ years of culinary experience lend their own special ingredients to the Epicurean experience.

Innovation Chef Jenna Johnson

culinaryfoods Chef Jason Morse representing Colorado Beef Council: A graduate of Johnson and Wales University Summa cum Laude and winner of the Apprenti Cuisinier Award for classical French Pastry, Jason honed and developed his cooking abilities while enjoying the lovely weather of Charleston, South Carolina. A member of the American Culinary Federation Colorado Chef’ Association, Jason currently sits on the Board of directors for the Colorado Chef’s Association and is serving as President of the ACF Colorado Chefs Education Foundation. Jason is an active leader within the community and focuses his time and talents on local agriculture and schools. Jason was invited to the White House to help launch the “Chef’s Move to Schools” Initiative. Chef Jason is currently the National Advisory Chair for the Chefs Move to Schools Initiative and works with school lunch programs locally and internationally. He is also involved in the ProStart program and was recently awarded the Colorado Restaurant Association ProStart Mentor of the Year award for 2013. Jason is active with the ACF Colorado Chef’s Association and is the current Apprenticeship Director for their Apprentice Chef program. 5280 Culinary produces a full line of retail food products for the Grilling Enthusiast. You can find the 5280 Culinary BBQ Provisions line at your locally owned Ace Hardware. Chef Jason also works with Ace Hardware as their Chef and Grill Expert. Chef recently partnered with the Rocky Mountain Ace Hardware Stores, Working together with Ace Hardware on Media, recipes, blogs and promoting all things grilling and BBQ. Jason has been featured on the Food Network, Local Media for both English and Hispanic segments, was a morning show chef for a Denver Radio station and currently produces the Colorado Department of Agriculture monthly recipes for local Colorado media, featuring monthly spots on Channel 9 News and in the Denver Post. Jason has been published in the Colorado Classique Junior League of Denver Cookbook, and various local publications. Known by the Colorado Beef Council as “Carne Rockstar” Jason has been featured on Azteca TV doing his local commercials for the Beef Council and King Soopers.

Chef Jason Morse