The 2017 Come Grow With Us Gala was a total success, raising $230,000 for Liberty's Kitchen. The proceeds go to Liberty's Kitchen, a restaurant on a mission to help improve the lives of at-risk youth with their famous Youth Development Program. They're training the future chefs and sous chefs that will create the food that New Orleans is famous for.
The awards were given out based on popular vote and a panel of esteemed judges.
Chef Micheal Gulotta of the fusion restaurant Maypop and Chef Mark Quitney of Roux Bistro took home the Best in Show prizes. Chef Gulotta made a fantastic whole roasted eggplant topped with feta and warm bacon vinaigrette, and Chef Quitney scored with a praline pork belly bun and a really innovative king cake pushup pop.
As far as pure creativity, Chef Lulu Chustz of Liberty Kitchen clearly won with her succulent and strange crispy chicken skin topped with maple rosemary flavored cotton candy. Chef Isaac Ramirez of Josephine Estelle presented his canestri beautifully.