Inside the Beaver Creek Master Chef Classic
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By Lauren Barth February 02, 2011
Later that weekend, I attended an intimate pastry workshop led by the one and only Francois Payard. He taught us a simple technique for designing extraordinary cake decorations. He suggests freezing a piece of marble overnight. Pour hot melted chocolate directly onto the frozen block and spread it evenly with a spatula. Then quickly peel it up in one straight piece. You can then mold the chocolate into abstract shapes.
This place is gorgeous. Snowshoeing is a great way to see the sights and embrace the outdoors—especially if you’re not a skier, which I am most certainly not.
Friday morning and what was on the agenda at the Bon Appétit Master Chef Classic? A two-hour snowshoeing trip with 50 of my newest friends followed by a luncheon at Grouse Mountain Grill catered by Chef Stephanie Izard from Chicago. I strapped on my complicated shoes and prepared myself for a serious workout and a tasty meal.
My first official event at the Beaver Creek Master Chef Classic was a dinner benefit hosted by Chef John Besh at Splendido at the Chateau, benefiting the Bright Future Foundation. We were lucky enough to walk into the kitchen and see Besh and his esteemed team prepping, chopping, and stirring.
For our main course, Besh served us slow-cooked elk shoulder—a little more daring than my usual fare, but delicious nonetheless. I sipped my Schweiger Vineyards Cabernet and schmoozed with the other VIP guests.
I loved hanging with my new foodie friends at the Master Chef Grand Tasting. I cozied up to Executive Chef Mark Ferguson and his team from Spago at the Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch. Those tuna-stuffed miso-sesame cones are to die for!
The chefs at Beaver Creek Chophouse in Beaver Creek Village served up sinful scoops of lobster mac-n-cheese at the Master Chef Grand Tasting. I’ve got to admit that I went for seconds!
I’m a lucky girl sandwiched between Chef John Besh and Chef Joey Campanaro, who served up a heaping portion of whole roasted veal loin to hungry guests at the Master Chef Grand Tasting. Why didn’t I ask him to get me a table at his new NYC restaurant, the Little Owl?!?
Chef David Gutowski of Grouse Mountain Grill presented a gourmet “McRib” at the Master Chef Grand Tasting. Topped with a thin slice of pickle, it may have been my favorite dish of the evening.
Cupcakes make everything better. And so does bacon. So I was pretty happy about these “Sunday breakfast” bacon-topped cupcakes presented at the Master Chef Grand Tasting.
Meanwhile, outside the auditorium at the Master Chef Challenge, we were served delicious Zacapa rum punch drinks. Yum.
Bon Appetit’s restaurant editor, Andrew Knowlton, and its Chef de Cuisine, Mary Nolan, played host and hostess at the Master Chef Challenge.
I totally admit it. I nibbled on Chef Payard’s scraps.
Beaver Creek Resort and Bon Appétit magazine joined forces for the 13th year in a row to host the Beaver Creek Master Chef Classic. Chefs from around the country traveled to Colorado to host seminars and classes, culminating in a grand tasting at the luxurious Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch. As Glam’s resident foodie, I attended a few of the amazing epicurean events. Take a look through my camera lens at my most memorable moments.
So what were the country’s top chefs eating backstage at the Master Chef Challenge? Blue Moose Pizza. Down-to-earth gourmands … I like it.
I finally lived out my dream of watching an Iron Chef¬–inspired competition happen right before my very eyes at Beaver Creek’s Master Chef Challenge. Renowned chefs from all over the country went 1:1 in 20-minute battles featuring a secret ingredient. So how was it? Torturous. For the record: smell-evision is a terrible idea.
Recognize this happy chef? It’s Kelly Liken from season seven of Top Chef. As a Colorado native, she had the home crowd rooting for her. She went up against Iron Chef Jose Garces in the Beaver Creek Master Chef Challenge. What was the secret ingredient? Green peppers!
And delightful Kahlúa martinis! Yum-yum!
Chef Garces won in the green-pepper challenge. He is an Iron Chef after all.
This was what happened when he peeled up the chocolate. How perfect is that?!
And then he gently positioned it around the cake. Flawless.
And this is the final result.
By far the best part of the pastry workshop: sampling the chef’s rich chocolate confections.
Chef Payard was nice enough to sign a copy of his new cookbook, Chocolate Epiphany, and pose for a picture.
Look at that view! Beaver Creek is just breathtaking. I guess it’s worth the workout.
Season four Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard takes a break from cooking and tasting to pose for a picture with yours truly. What did she serve us? Goat’s belly and goat sausage. I suppose it makes sense since the name of her restaurant is Girl & the Goat.
I can’t get over the mansion-size log cabins. Who lives like this? I want to meet him/her.
Last week, Beaver Creek Resort and Bon Appétit magazine joined forces for the 13th year in a row to host the Beaver Creek Master Chef Classic. Renowned chefs from around the country traveled to sunny, snow-covered Colorado to host culinary seminars, tastings, and classes, culminating in a grand tasting at the luxurious Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch.Read More ↓