Registration is now open for June 21 AL Seafood Cook-Off in G.S.
Lodge at Gulf State Park will host celebration of local seafood
Chef team registration is open for 6th Annual Alabama Seafood Cook-Off set for Monday, June 21 at The Lodge at Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores. All interested chef teams can visit EatAlabamaSeafood.com for registration forms and additional competition info. The 2020 competition was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I urge all Alabama chefs to help us make this our best year yet in honor of lost time celebrating an event that has become a highlight of the state’s culinary calendar,” said Chef Jim Smith, chairman of the Alabama Seafood Marketing Commission and past winner.
Located at a unique location situated along Alabama’s Gulf Coast, the venue’s beachfront views, open terrace and spacious, indoor ballroom, will provide a stunning and cuisine-appropriate backdrop for the competition.
Recipes entered must integrate Alabama Gulf Seafood as the featured ingredient and must be submitted to Chandler Thornton at email@example.com by Wednesday, May 12. Finalists will be selected by May 20.
Chef teams (one lead chef plus one assistant) will be judged based on Presentation, General Impression and Serving Methods; Creativity; Composition and Harmony of Ingredients; Correct Preparation and Craftsmanship; and Flavor, Taste and Texture.
The winner will represent Alabama in the 17th Annual Great American Seafood Cook-Off in New Orleans this August.
“This is historically an evening celebrating the best of Alabama cuisine from some of the best chefs in the state, and we welcome all interested participants to enter for their chance to battle for this coveted title in June,” said Chris Blankenship, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and program administrator of ASMC.
abama Seafood Marketing Commission.
The ASMC was created in 2011 to help provide advice, oversight, management and encouragement to the marketing of Alabama seafood. It is comprised of volunteer members appointed by the Governor that include fishermen, processors, charter boat operators, retailers, restaurant owners and others related to the Alabama seafood industry.
Past AL Seafood Cook-Off Winners
• 2015: Chef George Reis, owner of Ocean restaurant in Birmingham,
won the first-ever Alabama Seafood Cook-off. He won it with a dish made up of cumin coriander crusted grouper, Alabama shrimp sausage, English pea hummus, Sand Mountain tomato jam, pickled carrots and radishes and preserved lemon oil.
• 2016: Josh Quick, the executive chef at Odette restaurant in Florence, Ala.,and sous chef Gino Jacobsen, held their winning entry in the 2016 Alabama Seafood Cook-Off, which was held May 25 at The Wharf in Orange Beach, Ala.Quick won with a recipe that was built around fresh Alabama red snapper.
• 2017: Chef Brad Gilstrap (for Chef Brody Olive), who was out of town due to a death in the family) represented Voyager’s Restaurant at Perdido Beach Resort impressed the judges with Chef Olive’s “Fruitti di Alabama” recipe, which features three Alabama Gulf Seafood components: Pan Roasted Gulf Jolt Head Porgy, Summer Squash Jumbo Lump Crab Caponata, Topped with Crispy Rock Shrimp Piccatta.
• 2018: Jeremy Downey, chef at Bistro V in Vestavia Hills, won the Alabama Seafood Cook-Off this week in Bayou La Batre. Downey aced Wednesday’s competition by preparing a creative grouper dish — specifically, cast iron grouper with Royal Red mezcal ceviche, Benton’s bacon, sweet onion, chayote squash and lump crab stuffed with squash blossoms, tempura style with salsa verde.
• 2019: Chef Ramon Jacobsen, right, of Odette in Florence, Alabama, took home the top prize on May 1, 2019, at the Alabama Seafood Cook-Off in Bayou La Batre. His sous chef was Josh Quick. The winning dish was gulf snapper escabeche and Kalamata olive causa.