Monroe aces ACF Catskills Regional Competition

Twenty-eight Monroe Culinary students set off Friday afternoon, Oct. 19 in a downpour headed upstate to Delhi, N.Y. to compete at the Annual ACF Catskills Regional Competition. When they returned to the Monroe Campus they had 27 medals to add to their collection, which is now toppling 300!

The top awards in the hot food competition went to Kencito Vernon, who took home a gold medal and the honors of “Best in Show.” Laura Sanchez, a freshman, also took home a high-scoring gold medal that earned her the title “Most Improved.” Brenda Lara, Sade Aguila, Rossella Cangialosi, Stephanie Cardenas and Yocary Luna also earned gold medals.

In the cold food platter competition on Sunday, coached by Chef Pellizzari, Veronica Marcano, earned a silver medal along with the honors of “Best in Show,” and “Most Artistic.”

Serving on the judging panel along with ACF judges Chef David St. John-Grubb, Chef Victor Sommo, Chef Michael Morgan, was School of Hospitality Management and the Culinary Arts (SHMCA)Dean Dr. Frank Costantino, and Chef Eric Pellizzari and Chef Michael Vignapiano of Monroe College.

Dr. Costantino was extremely pleased with the results. “Our group consisted of many first semester freshmen who have only been on campus for six weeks and they have dedicated many of their hours practicing in the kitchen for the past 3 weeks,” he said. “Their hard work showed and has laid the foundation for promising futures.”

Five students who were coached by Chef Pellizzari as part of their HP 420, Culinary Showpieces and Grand Buffet Class, took home more medals for Monroe! In addition to Veronica Marcano’s silver medal and titles “Best in Show” and “Most Artistic” for the cold food competition, Jasmin McDonald and Lim Hosung received silver medals and Shamel Donigan and Cuauhtemoc Cortez won bronze medals.

Tihelia James, former captain of the Varsity Culinary Team, assisted Dr. Costantino with the hot food team this weekend.

The 27 medals was the best showing ever for SHMCA in a single weekend in Delhi! Congrats to all of the competitors and coaches.

Hot Food Competition Results

Gold medals:

Kencito Vernon, Culinary Arts AAS, 2013, America’s Best HS Chef finalist 2011, CCAP, N.Y. ProStart, Food & Finance HS

Sade Aguila, Culinary Arts AAS, 2013, America’s Best HS Chef winner 2011, CCAP, N.Y. ProStart, Food & Finance HS

Brenda Lara, Pastry Arts AAS, 2013, America’s Best HS Pastry finalist 2011, CCAP, N.Y. ProStart, Port Richmond HS, Staten Island

Stephanie Cardenas, Pastry Arts AAS 2012, Hospitality BBA 2013, CCAP, Food & Finance HS

Laura Sanchez, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Pastry Chef winner 2012, NJ ProStart, Passaic Tech HS, New Jersey

Yocary Luna, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef winner 2012, CCAP, N.Y. ProStart, Food & Finance HS

Rossella Cangialosi, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist 2012, N.Y. Skills USA,

East Meadow HS, Long Island

Silver medals:

Jalissa Pruitt, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist 2012, August Martin HS, Queens

Angelina Hernandez, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist 2012, NJ ProStart, Passaic Tech HS, New Jersey

Shanise Shirley, Culinary Arts 2013, Discovery HS, Bronx

Kimani Hines, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, Gateway School for Environmental Studies, Bronx

Enmely Soriano, Culinary Arts AAS 2012, Hospitality Management BBA 2013, NJ ProStart, Passaic Tech HS, New Jersey

Carmen Albino, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist 2012, CCAP, Port Richmond HS, Staten Island

Bronze medals:

Katherine Taveras, Culinary Arts AAS 2013, CCAP, Frankford HS, Philadelphia, PA.

Gabriela Cuadra, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist, CCAP, Food & Finance HS

Cheyenne Walcott, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist, CCAP, Food & Finance HS

Nashali Rivera, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist, CCAP, Food & Finance HS

Ashley Medrano, Pastry Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Pastry Chef finalist, CCAP, Food & Finance HS

Elvy Gerez, Culinary Arts AAS 2013, NJ ProStart, Passaic Tech HS, New Jersey

Quency Traore, Pastry Arts AAS 2014, America’s Best HS Chef finalist 2012, CCAP, Port Richmond HS, Staten Island

Glen Hernandez, Culinary Arts AAS 2014, CCAP, Banning HS, Los Angeles, CA

Melissa Portalatin, Culinary Arts AAS, 2012, Washingtonville HS, N.Y.

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