In Good Taste

Mason Dixon Master Chef Tournament Kicks Off June 16

Sixteen chefs will battle it out in a one-on-one single-elimination tournament

By Payam Agha-Ghassem | June 12, 2014, 12:00 am

--Photo by The Mason Dixon Master Chef Tournament
In Good Taste

Mason Dixon Master Chef Tournament Kicks Off June 16

Sixteen chefs will battle it out in a one-on-one single-elimination tournament

By Payam Agha-Ghassem | June 12, 2014, 12:00 am

--Photo by The Mason Dixon Master Chef Tournament

For those who like a little heat in the kitchen, the fourth annual Mason Dixon Chef Master Tournament kicks off on June 16.

The 15-day tournament pits 16 regional chef teams one-on-one in a single-elimination competition. It will be held at the Inn at the Colonnade Baltimore.

Similar to Iron Chef America from the Food Network, the chefs will compete in a timed competition in which they'll create an appetizer, entree, and dessert for three expert judges.

The chefs are scored on creativity, presentation, and taste. In this bracket-style tournament, only one chef advances to the next round until it gets down to the finale on Aug. 24 when one chef will be crowned the 2014 Mason Dixon Master Chef.

Last year’s winner was chef Neill Howell, who now owns Corner Pantry.

Gerardo Gonzales, Jake Hack, and Jeff Keeney are among the local chefs who are competing in this year’s tournament.

Keeney from The Point in Fells in Baltimore has competed in the previous three years of the tournament, making it to the semifinals each year.

“The tournament made me a better chef,” Keeney says. “I’ve been in the business since I was 13. It’s really refined my cooking. This pushes me to do different things and get ahead of the curve.”

Hack, a chef at Conrad’s Seafood Restaurant in Perry Hall, competed in last year’s tournament and made it to the second round.

“We really pride ourselves in unique blends of flavors and combinations of food that you wouldn’t typically see together,” Hack says.

The experience for Hack was invaluable.

“I think it’s just a fantastic opportunity to work with a bunch of other great local chefs and have a good time,” Hack says.

Guests can purchase general admission tickets for $25, which are on sale now. Ten percent of the proceeds from each ticket sold will go to Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland.

Other local competitors include Timothy Dyson of Bluegrass Tavern, Mark Tracey of Roland Park Place, and Kiet Philavanh of Basta Pista. A full list of the competing chefs is available here.




You May Also Like


In Good Taste

Open & Shut: Tersiguel's; Indigma; Union Collective Updates

The latest restaurant openings, closings, and recent news.

On The Town

Baltimore's Best Halloween Parties, Concerts, and Festivals

Get in on food, fun, and frights at these local Halloween events

In Good Taste

Gundalow Juice Stops Production to Focus on Catering Services

CEO and founder Dana Sicko discusses the next chapter with Gundalow Gourmet.


Food & Drink

Super Scoopers

In honor of the dog days of summer, we round up 20 of the best flavors in town.

In Good Taste

Remington Gears Up For the Seventh Annual Baltimore Deviled Egg Pageant

The Single Carrot Theatre event features home cooks making creative whipped concoctions.

Food & Drink

The Wizard of Wine

Robert Parker, the father of modern wine criticism, ages like fine wine.

Connect With Us

Most Read


Ben Jealous Fared Well in Debate, But Will It Make a Difference?: Democratic challenger scores some points, but Gov. Larry Hogan holds a big leads in polls.

Actor Željko Ivanek Hosts 35th Anniversary NAMI Event: The Emmy Award-winner makes his first extended stay in Baltimore since leaving Homicide: Life on the Street.

Baltimore Japan Art Festival Returns to Station North With Illustrator Yusuke Nakamura: The two-day fest will also feature a film series and a family-friendly lineup of outdoor events.

Get an Inside Look at City Architecture with Doors Open Baltimore: The fifth annual event shows off 60 unique buildings and neighborhoods.

Baltimore Musician Hunter Hooligan Debuts Song at New York Fashion Week: "Pink" served as the soundtrack to designer Stevie Boi's rose-tinted vision.