Sous chef Trey Herty of Brown Butter Southern Kitchen & Bar won Gambit's fourth annual Emerging Chefs Challenge July 13 at The Cannery. The competition featured sous chefs from 15 New Orleans restaurants including Restaurant August, Shaya, Brennan's New Orleans, Peche Seafood Grill and Dick & Jenny's.
Herty prepared slow-roasted pork belly with peaches, peas and ricotta.
"The chefs (at Brown Butter) told me to try to figure out something that would be accessible but original," Herty said after claiming his trophy and the $1,000 prize.
"Peaches and peas are in season, so I did that," Herty added.
Herty developed the dish in the kitchen at Brown Butter and it was added to the menu last week.
Second place went to Chris Roberts of Sac-A-Lait, who served smoked Louisiana bullfrog with corn bisque, whipped goat creme, shaved Celeste figs and Sichuan pepper. He has worked with bullfrog at the restaurant, including highlighting smoked bullfrog in a gumbo, but the dish at Emerging Chefs Challenge was original (it is not on the menu at the restaurant).
"I was trying to do the most off-the-wall thing I could think of," Roberts said. "They told me to do something that everyone would remember."
Sous chef Justin Ross of Peche Seafood Grill won third place for his chilled corn soup with crab and farro.
Winners were determined by ballots cast by attendees after sampling dishes. More than 500 votes were cast.
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