Florida Meeting Services contacted Puff ‘n Stuff Catering with a client who was looking for something unique and memorable for their guests who were coming from all over the world. With over 30 years of experience Passionately Perfecting Life’s Celebration’s we accepted the challenge and created a Top Chef Competition in our very own kitchen.
To create a truly one-of-a-kind event, we contacted Top Chef and arranged to have finalist Chef Casey Thompson compete along side the Puff team to create a remarkable culinary show. The client set the rules for the competition, each course would have one common ingredient and it was up to each chef and his/her team to make the best use of that ingredient!
Executive Chef Paul Lorrain led Team Puff along with Sous Chef Zack Zietlow, Barry Levine, Elroy Francis, and Rosa Aguilar in friendly competition with Team Casey who was teamed with our Sous Chef Greg Smitka, Conception Rivera, Bricelyn Saffron, Melle Benosme, and Suely Rogers.
President and Owner, Warren Dietal kicked off the event and welcomed each guest. The teams were set, the finest ingredients from the East Coast were ordered, wines were paired for each course, the ingredients announced, and the competition began! Warren interviewed the Chefs as they were preparing their culinary creations, and the guests were invited to come to the food prep areas to watch and ask the chefs questions.
The guests loved the competition and took their scoring very seriously. One guest said he was “a huge fan of the Top Chef Competition TV shows and to be a part of an event like this was a dream come true.” After all score cards had been collected and tallied both team Puff and team Casey performed well and were favored highly by guests. However, when guests were asked to select the meal they would most like to enjoy again, team Puff was the Winner! After the exciting competition guests enjoyed the opportunity to take pictures with and get autographs from the culinary stars of the night. For the Puff ‘n Stuff Catering kitchen, Chefs, and guests this was certainly a night to go down in history!
The First Move- The Flavors of Florida Citrus
Paired with Laetitia Chardonnay
Blue Crab Stuffed Squash Blossom with warm asparagus & bruleed Sabayon
Szechuan Pepper-Crusted Shrimp with orange rice noodles
The Surprising and Delicious Tactics of Heirloom Tomatoes
Paired with Silver Beach Sauvignon Blanc
Heirloom Tomatoes and Burrata
Heirloom Tomato Panzella
Ras El Hanout the Decisive Engagement- A Duck Duo vs. Poached Loin of Veal
Paired with Laetitia Pinot Noir
Poached Loin of Veal with the Chef’s own ras el hanout
Duck Squared dueling entree of duck breast & duck confit hash prepared with the Chef’s own ras el hanout
Bataille Des Chocolats
Paired with Mollydooker Two Left Feet Shiraz Blend
Pots du Chocolat & Doughnuts
Balloon au Chocolat white chocolate dome over elegant chocolate sponge cake with citrus & chocolate ganache revealed by melting the dome with warm orange & rose syrup
Photography: Chris Gillyard Photography
Venue: Puff ‘n Stuff Catering Commissary
Catering: Puff ‘n Stuff Catering, Special Event Planner Paula Sautter
Destination Management Company: Florida Meeting Services