The Culinary Insider - May 26, 2008 (Vol. VI, Issue 11)

Viva Las Vegas at the 2008 ACF National Convention, July 14-17

More than 2,000 culinarians are expected to converge on the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in the heart of the world-famous Las Vegas strip July 14-17 for the ACF National Convention. Offering more than 100 educational seminars, culinary demos, networking and social functions, exciting culinary competitions, outstanding meal events and more, the deck is stacked in your favor when it comes to Achieving Culinary Excellence.

Seminars, Workshops, Demos and More
Educational programming includes seminars covering sustainable fishing and seafood practices, the value of the slow-food movement, financial planning, laws and legal issues in the foodservice industry, sanitation laws and practices, creating a successful culinary-arts program and more.

Exciting cooking demos cover the culinary spectrum:

  • Savory Applications for Chocolate & Cocoa by the Guittard Chocolate Company will illustrate new ways to incorporate chocolate and cocoa throughout the entire menu by emphasizing that the typically sweet treat is not just for dessert anymore.
  • Meat & Livestock Australia presents original ways to use Australian lamb in tapas, sandwiches and other out-of-the box items.
  • Heirloom Pork: How Specialty Farmers Have Enhanced Center-of-the-Plate, sponsored by Snake River Farms, illustrates creative recipes for Kurobuta pork.
  • Edward Leonard, CMC, AAC, demonstrates ways to use underutilized lamb cuts in Cooking with American Lamb, sponsored by the American Lamb Board.

Skills for Culinarians Day, sponsored by Le Cordon Bleu Schools North America, on Thursday, July 17, features Contemporary Asian Cuisine with Martin Yan, Viable Vegan Victuals by Tal Ronnen, and Artistry in Ice with Chanh Boupha.

Registration is easy when you go online at Act before June 13 and take advantage of the early registration discounts. Room rates at the MGM Grand begin at $124 per night (plus taxes and fees) and are valid until June 11, so make your reservations today. Book your room online, or by calling the hotel directly at (888) 646-1203.

ACF National Convention
MGM Grand Hotel and Casino
Updated Schedule

AAC Dinner, Red Rock Casino, July 13

Online Registration & Downloadable Registration Form

Sponsorship & Trade Show Exhibitor Opportunities

Aidan Murphy, CMC, AAC, and Keriann Von Raesfeld Win Big at WACS International Culinary Competitions

Aidan Murphy, CMC, AAC, and Keriann Von Raesfeld returned from the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS) Congress in Dubai, May 12-15, with big wins and worldwide culinary recognition. Murphy placed third overall and first in the food-and-wine-pairing category in the inaugural Global Chefs Challenge, sponsored in part by Unilever Foodsolutions. Keriann Von Raesfeld, sponsored by Custom Culinary, Inc., won first place in the Hans Bueschkens World Junior Chefs' Challenge, earning the title "best young cook in the world."

"We are proud of a job well done in Dubai. Aidan and Keriann continue to excel as top competitors and have proved their skill and dedication to the culinary profession with their remarkable performances. They will carry their success in Dubai with them throughout their careers. They have represented our country and the America Culinary Federation well," said John Kinsella, CMC, CCE, AAC, ACF national president.

Global Chefs Challenge, sponsored in part by Unilever Foodsolutions
Murphy, executive chef at Old Warson Country Club, St. Louis, and a member of Chefs de Cuisine Association of St. Louis Inc., represented the Americas placing third overall as he competed against six other finalists representing Africa, Asia, Central Europe, Northern Europe, Pacific Rim and Southern Europe. Murphy was assisted by his apprentice, Mike Palazzola, a line cook under Murphy at Old Warson Country Club and a member of ACF Culinary Youth Team USA. Toines Smulders of The Netherlands was declared the winner and Norway's Tom Victor Gausdal placed second. Wine experts awarded Murphy first place for the best food-and-wine pairing. Visit ACF's Web site for more information about Murphy, his menu and the Global Chefs Challenge.

Hans Bueschkens World Junior Chefs' Challenge
Von Raesfeld, sponsored by Custom Culinary, Inc., won first place in the Hans Bueschkens World Junior Chefs' Challenge and the title of "best young cook in the world." A graduate of the culinary-arts program at Professional Culinary Institute (PCI), Campbell, Calif., and a current student of its baking and pastry-arts program, she competed against 16 countries for the Hans Bueschkens Memorial Trophy. Johannes Wagner of Germany placed second and Jorge Fernandez of Portugal placed third.

Dubai is not the end of the road when it comes to international competitions for Von Raesfeld, a member of the Santa Clara Valley Chapter. She will represent the United States in the Concours International Des Jeunes Commis Rôtisseurs, held in Paris, France, September 18-20. Visit ACF's Web site for more information about Von Raesfeld winning the Hans Bueschkens World Junior Chefs' Challenge and her menu.

ACF Chefs Receive WACS Global Master Chef Certification at WACS Congress

Five ACF certified master chefs, of which there are only 61 in the United States, received WACS Global Master Chef certification, the highest attainable certification, at the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS) Congress in Dubai, May 12-15.

To receive WACS Global Master Chef certification, an applicant must be a master chef in a WACS member country and a member of a national chefs association that is a member country of WACS. The chef must have a minimum of eight years of professional experience as a master chef documented, and pass practical and theoretical examinations in their respective countries.

The following ACF members who received this prestigious certification are:

  • John Kinsella, CMC, CCE, AAC, ACF national president, culinary educator, Midwest Culinary Institute, Cincinnati; ACF Greater Cincinnati Chapter
  • Steven Jilleba, CMC, CCE, AAC, corporate executive chef, Unilever Foodsolutions, Lisle, Ill.; ACF Chicago Chefs of Cuisine Inc.
  • Edward Leonard, CMC, AAC, executive chef, Westchester Country Club, Rye, N.Y.; ACF Big Apple Chapter
  • Ferdinand Metz, CMC, AAC, HOF, president emeritus, The Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, N.Y.; Mid Hudson Culinary Association
  • Aidan Murphy, CMC, AAC, executive chef, Old Warson Country Club, St. Louis; Chefs de Cuisine of St. Louis Inc.

ACF Receives Humanitarian of the Year Award

ACF was awarded the Honorary President Humanitarian of the Year Award at the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS) Congress in Dubai, May 12-15, for its Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.

In response to the catastrophic damage caused by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005, ACF established the ACFF Disaster Relief Fund and called on members for financial donations. The money raised, along with the proceeds from the inaugural Certified Master Chefs dinner held at the 2006 ACF National Convention, was used to help the thousands of victims and fellow ACF members from the area affected by Katrina. In addition, ACF, through its foundation, donated $5,000 to Leah Chase, a renowned New Orleans chef, author and television personality, to reopen Dooky Chase Restaurant after it was closed due to damages from Katrina.

ACF members also donated 800 tons of food to past ACF National President John Folse, CEC, AAC, HBOT, executive chef/owner of Chef John Folse & Company, Gonzales, La. Folse set up a feeding station in the outlying affected communities and served three meals a day to more than 500 people in a shelter.

ACFFAC Accredited Program Coordinators and Compliance Directors Workshop

American Culinary Federation Foundation Accreditation Workshop
Friday, July 18, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Workshop overview:

  • Understand the recent developments in ACFFAC standards
  • Ascertain ACFFAC policies and procedures and required knowledge and competencies
  • Learn about the requirements for bachelor-degree accreditation and eligibility requirements
  • Roundtable discussions of recent program changes and networking of ideas
  • Detailed review of electronic self-study and delivery format

Cost: $125, includes lunch, handouts, disk of reporting files

Download and complete the registration form, and mail it by June 23 with payment to:
Candice Childers, assistant director of accreditation
American Culinary Federation Foundation, 180 Center Place Way, St. Augustine, FL 32095

For additional information or questions, call Candice Childers at (800) 624-9458, ext. 120, or email her at

Torres Named to AAC Culinary Regional Team USA

Randy Torres, director of culinary education at the Professional Culinary Institute, Campbell, Calif., has been named to AAC Culinary Regional Team USA, one of the four teams that make up ACF Culinary Team USA. He will support AAC Culinary Regional Team USA as it competes on the world culinary stage against more than 40 international teams at the Internationale Kochkunst Ausstellung International Culinary Art Competition in Erfurt, Germany, in October.

A member of Santa Clara Valley Chapter, Torres brings more than 15 years of culinary experience to the team. He received his formal training from Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, Calif., where he earned an advanced culinary certificate in 1999. Torres has worked in private clubs and hotels around the country and has won numerous competition medals. As an educator, Torres is passionate about inspiring young professionals through culinary competitions. He has coached numerous student teams and students, including Keriann Von Raesfeld. Visit ACF's Web site to learn more about Torres.

Other members of AAC Culinary Regional Team USA are:

  • Jill Bosich, CEC, CCE, AAC; team manager; executive chef/energy programs advisor, Southern California Gas Company, Downey, Calif.; ACF Orange Empire Chefs & Professional Cooks Association
  • Christopher Desens, CEC; executive chef, The Racquet Club Ladue, St. Louis; ACF Chefs de Cuisine Association of St. Louis, Inc.
  • Scott Fetty; chef/instructor, Pennsylvania Culinary Institute, Pittsburgh; ACF Pittsburgh Chapter
  • Daryl L. Shular, CCC; corporate executive chef, PFG-Milton's, Oakwood, Ga.; ACF Greater Atlanta Chapter, Inc.

Sponsors of ACF Culinary Team USA are Kraft Foodservice, Tyson Food Service, Uncle Ben's, Unilever, Club Managers Association of America, KitchenAid, Chef Revival, Fortessa, Friedr. Dick, Westchester Country Club, and Blodgett.

2008 ACF Regional Conference Photos

The 2008 ACF Regional Conferences have "achieved culinary excellence" with a combined attendance of more than 1,700 chefs, culinarians, partners and foodservice representatives in attendance at the Central, Southeast, Northeast and Western regional conferences.

ACF Central Regional Conference
ACF Southeast Regional Conference
ACF Northeast Regional Conference
ACF Western Regional Conference

National Pork Board: Visit

Heirloom breeds, organic, naturally raised, locally grown and antibiotic-free pork--niche pork producers can supply the special attributes your customers want. Visit to find what you're looking for.

Tyson Food Service Spring Edition Insights & Discovery Newsletter - Around the Clock Dining

SPRINGDALE, Ark. (May 2008) - The spring issue of the Tyson Food Service Insights & Discovery newsletter, "Around the Clock Dining," examines the growing trend of consumers letting their busy agendas dictate when and what they eat, rather than having their schedules revolve around meal times. The distinction among breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner is blurring. "Around the Clock Dining" discusses how this trend is leading to many quick-service and casual restaurants extending operating hours and offering smaller portions and snack-based menu items.

To receive the latest copy of Insights & Discovery or view past issues, visit

Ocean Spray® Ultimate Cranberry Recipe Contest

Academy of Ice Carving & Design (AICD)