Top chefs will turn specialty products into great meals at the 34th Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco. The show, Jan. 18 – 20, 2009, at the Moscone Center, is the largest marketplace for specialty foods and beverages on the West Coast. Tens of thousands of the world’s finest foods will be on display.

Over three days, more than 30 chefs will compete for prizes in Iron Chef-style contests judged by certified judges from the American Culinary Federation. The event is organized by the American Culinary Federation, San Diego Chapter, in conjunction with the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade, Inc., the Fancy Food Show’s owner. This popular event was launched at last year’s Winter Fancy Food Show, which was held in San Diego.

The Cook-Off Corner has two contests. The California Culinary Challenge is a sponsored hot food competition sanctioned by the ACF. There will be four categories with specialty ingredients each chef must use in a one-hour contest, with a $500 cash prize for “Best of Show” in each category. The second is California Taste of Elegance, sponsored by the National Pork Board, with 12 to 18 chefs competing as they prepare and plate pork dishes

The Cook-Off Corner is in the Gateway Ballroom, where observers can also check out displays of hundreds of specialty food products.

California Culinary Challenge

Sunday January 18

 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Tyson Game Hen & Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Bacon  12:30 p.m.: Awards Ceremony  1 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. : Soy Council using trans-fat-free soy oil, soymilk, firm tofu and

edamame beans  4:30 p.m.: Awards Ceremony

Monday January 19

 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Niman Ranch Idaho & Utah Growers Lamb Sirloin  12:30 p.m.: Awards Ceremony  1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.: Mayfield’s Seafood Shrimp & Anova Saku Tuna  4:30 p.m.: Awards Ceremony

(more)California Taste of Elegance Championships

Tuesday January 20

 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.: National Pork Board  2:30: Awards Ceremony


The NASFT is a not-for-profit trade association established in 1952 to foster trade, commerce and interest in the specialty food industry. Today there are more than 3,000 members in the U.S. and abroad. For further information on the NASFT and its Fancy Food Shows, go to

NASFT MEDIA CONTACTS: Ron Tanner, VP Communications & Education; 646-878-0115, Louise Kramer, Communications Director; 646-878-0130,

ACF Chefs & Culinairans of San Diego

Dean Thomas, Executive Chef, Barona Valley Ranch Resort & Casino; 619-328-3524;