A Savoury Recipe for Summer Fun

The weather forecast on July 20 was calling for possible showers but by the time Chef Challenge was underway, the sun was beaming over the amphitheatre at Thunderbird Commons.

This was the fourth year for the event which sees competitors from across the campus create delicious locally-sourced tasting plates to be paired with local craft brews from our sponsor, Driftwood Brewery.

There were two categories of prizes to be won: Judge’s Choice and People’s Choice. If you missed the event, read on to see which two were crowned champions.

While guests ate and sipped, our event MC and UBC Alumni, Emma Choo (famously known as Vancouver Foodie) kept things running smoothly.

While guests weren’t eating and socializing, things to do at the event included fun family-friendly games and additional entertainment, which was provided by not one, but three bands, including the folksy vibes of Shylo Sharity pictured here.

Our first competitor was BierCraft from Wesbrook Village, whose Beer-Braised Short Rib Jerky with Watercress and Blueberry Salad with salted caramel and balsamic vinaigrette was paired with Cry Me a River Gose.

Our special team of student and faculty chefs from the Faculty of Land & Food Systems called the Aggies created a pulled oyster mushroom in a flour tortilla served with BBQ sauce, Vegan Coleslaw and roasted corn. This dish was paired with Arcus Pilsner.


Last year’s People’s Choice winner, Koerner’s Pub gave us a Korean pork ribs with garlic chicken crackling, miso buttered corn, mango and jicama salad and pickled watermelon rind paired with White Bark Witbier.


Open Kitchen, one of UBC Food Service newest dining hall in Orchard Commons gave us a Drunken Sturgen made with Fat Tug IPA-cured Sunshine Coast sturgeon, lemon grass, kaffir lime, local stone fruit, summer celebration greens & house made cracker. This dish was paired with Fat Tug IPA.

AMS Conferences and Catering has been part of Chef Challenge since our first year. This year they gave us “Edible Garden”  which was described as an unnatural adventure of nature with textures of parsnip, rye, carrots and beets. This dish was perfectly paired with Naughty Hildegard ESB.


Here are our judges carefully comparing notes. In the picture are (from back to front): Stacey Skoretz, Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Medicine and winner of our Campus Resident food critique contest; Thalia Stopa of Scout Magazine; and Sarah Kashani, Executive Chef at Charlie’s Little Italian.


And our voting jars as the People’s votes came in… The winner's were:


Judges Choice: AMS Conferences and Catering. The judges said that they were very impressed with the creativity and choice of flavours and textures of this dish.


People’s Choice: LFS Aggies. The crowd thought our student team rocked their dish!

We’ll see you at next year’s Chef Challenge. Till then, be sure to check out what other events will keep you entertained while you wait for another summer!