DC Embassy Chef Challenge, DC

Erik Moses, Senior VP and Managing Director, Events DC handing the People's Choice award to Chef Cynthia Verna of Haiti | Photo: Courtesy of Ronald Reagan Building

When: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 6PM

Hot Spot: Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, Washington, DC

Deets: The Embassy Chef Challenge 2017 was a great success and full of culture and fun! The 2017 Judges’ Choice was awarded to Chef Moha Fedal of Morocco with his Marrakech Tangia: lamb shoulder sealed in a clay jar called tangia (preserved lemon, saffron, tumeric, garlic, aged butter and olive oil. Chef Cynthia Verna from Haiti won the People’s Choice with her shrimp ceviche with plantain chips. 

The 2017 Events DC Embassy Chef Challenge presented by TCMA (A Drew Company) highlighted dishes and flavors from all around the world. Embassy chefs gathered on Wednesday, May 24 in the Atrium of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, where they showed off their skills and compete for the People’s Choice and Judges’ Choice awards.

The Events DC Embassy Chef Challenge not only encourages culinary diplomacy, but also celebrates the arts of many cultures and highlights some of the area’s amazing musicians, dancers and singers. Throughout the evening, cultural dances and artists will grace the stage along with the headlining band, City of the Sun, an instrumental post-rock trio from Brooklyn, New York.

“We are honored to bring together some of the world’s most culturally-distinct talents in the culinary and performing arts for the second-consecutive Events DC Embassy Chef Challenge,” said Erik A. Moses, senior vice president and managing director of sports, entertainment, and special events at Events DC. “May is International Cultural Awareness Month in DC and we look forward to both celebrating and advancing the city’s cultural diplomacy through cuisine and entertainment.” 

Patrons tasted traditional dishes from cultures both common and impossible to find in Greater-Washington such as salmon ceviche and merquén mussels curated by Chef Guillermo Muñoz of Chile. Haitian Embassy chef Cynthia Verna prepared a full-spread comprised of creole chicken, yellow basmati rice served with pigeon peas, Roma tomatoes and coconut milk; and a beet and carrot salad with homemade lime dressing. Representing the Embassy of Barbados, Chef Damien Leach offered a unique spin on tropical fish with his piña colada mahi mahi filet.

Chef Red Garcia of the Philippines defended his title with a dish that uses a classic wrapping method called “binalot” – which is a way of wrapping foods with banana leaves, derived from the word ballot, which means “to wrap.” He had a variety of foods to wrap such as rice, meat, fish, eggs and pickled vegetables. Dishes like kottu roti from the Embassy of Sri Lanka may be new to American diners and guests had a chance to taste the dish and speak with the embassy’s culinary team about how it is prepared. Chef Anuradha Wijesinghe explains kottu roti as being made with godhamba roti, vegetables, egg or meat and spices.

Embassies offered various native cocktails, beer, and wine to be sampled throughout the evening. Singapore served up the city’s famous “Singapore Sling,” while the Embassy of Bolivia had a selection of Bolivian wines for patrons to taste. The Embassy of Azerbaijan offered a variety of both red and white wines from their emerging high-altitude growing regions.

About Events DC

Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, delivers premier event services and flexible venues across the nation’s capital. Leveraging the power of a world-class destination and creating amazing attendee experiences, Events DC generates economic and community benefits through the attraction and promotion of business, athletic, entertainment and cultural activities. Events DC oversees the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, an anchor of the District’s hospitality and tourism economy that generates over $400 million annually in total economic impact, and the historic Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Square. Events DC manages the Stadium-Armory campus, which includes Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium and surrounding Festival Grounds, the non-military functions of the DC Armory and Maloof Skate Park at RFK Stadium. Events DC also built and now serves as landlord for Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified major professional sports stadium in the United States. The most recent addition is Gateway DC, an innovative and versatile space featuring a covered and open-air pavilion in the center of a 1-acre park, conveniently located in the Congress Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC. For more information, please visit www.eventsdc.com and find us on social media – Facebook (Events DC), Twitter (@TheEventsDC and @TheEventsDC_SED for the Sports Entertainment and Special Events Division), and Instagram (@EventsDC).

About Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center (RRB/ITC)

The RRB/ITC is the first and only federal building dedicated to both government and private use, mandated by Congress, it unites the country’s best public and private resources to create a national forum for the advancement of trade. Owned by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) and exclusively managed by TCMA (A Drew Company), the Reagan Building is the official World Trade Center Washington, DC, and a premier conference and event venue with executive office space, attractions, dining, retail, parking, and community activities. For more information, please visit www.itcdc.com or follow us @ReaganITCDC.

About TCMA (A Drew Company)

TCMA is the exclusive manager of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center (RRB/ITC). TCMA’s team excels in delivering unparalleled service and expertise in Real-Estate Development, Leasing, Building Operations, Hospitality Services, and International Trade Promotion. For more information, please visit www.drewcompany.com.

Who You May Spot: Chefs of the United States’ international ambassadors

Hint For The Average Socialite: Purchase your tickets and join the cultural event. General admission tickets are $75 and will include all global sips and bites and access to all live entertainment. For $125, VIP guests can enjoy a one-hour early entry to meet all chef’s and network with embassy community elites. For ticket purchases and more information about the event, please visit www.eventsdcembassychefchallenge.com.

What's Trending: @TheEventsDC_SED @ReaganITCDC