IUP Chef Earns Recognition at Aramark Culinary Excellence Challenge

Posted on 3/2/2011 10:53:25 AM

IUP Dining Services is pleased to recognize Chef Kevin Hodgkinson for earning first place at the East Regional Aramark Culinary Excellence (ACE) competition on March 1, 2011.

The ACE Program recognizes and rewards outstanding chefs throughout Aramark-managed higher education accounts and provides the opportunity for the chefs to share their culinary expertise with a broader audience in an environment that is both competitive and stimulating.

The event featured top higher education chefs from the East Region. Each of the participating chefs was selected because he or she consistently strives for culinary excellence and is focused on surpassing customers’ expectations with great meals. Each regional competition features eight chefs who will present a meal made from a mystery basket to three judges. The chefs prepared one show plate each for the students and judges and a taster plate for each judge. Each chef had three hours to prepare their meals from prep to finish.

Chef Hodgkinson has been the catering chef at IUP for three years. Prior to joining the IUP Dining Services team, he worked at the Hilton Hotel and Towers in downtown Pittsburgh for thirteen years. Chef Hodgkinson is a graduate of the prestigious American Culinary Federation program at the Community College of Allegheny County.

On his way to the gold medal, Chef Hodgkinson prepared sea bass with appaloosa bean ragout, Swiss chard with dried cherries and walnuts, and tomato beurre blanc. For dessert, he prepared honey tuille with mascarpone caramel cream, pineapple caramel sauce, and a pineapple fritter.

The 2011 ACE Challenge provides an opportunity for the organization to recognize the talents and creativity of its culinary staff from across the United States and Canada. The competition also provides Aramark chefs with the opportunity to showcase their culinary expertise with a broader audience in a competitive environment.

The top three finalists from each of the nine regions will compete for the coveted “Copper Pot” at the Aramark Culinary Excellence National Challenge, to be held in July in Tampa, Florida.

For further information on the competition, please contact Jennifer Braughler at 724-357-3102.

About Aramark Higher Education

Aramark Higher Education is dedicated to excellence in dining, facility, conference center, and stadium and arena services. Aramark enhances the living and learning experience and environment for more than six hundred colleges and universities throughout North America. For more information and a list of our services, visit Aramark Higher Education.

About Aramark

Aramark is a leader in professional services, providing award-winning food services, facilities management, and uniform and career apparel to health care institutions, universities and school districts, stadiums and arenas, and businesses around the world. In Fortune magazine’s 2009 list of World’s Most Admired Companies, Aramark was ranked number one in its industry, consistently ranking since 1998 as one of the top three most admired companies in its industry as evaluated by peers and analysts.

Aramark seeks to responsibly address issues that matter to its clients, customers, employees, and communities by focusing on employee advocacy, environmental stewardship, health and wellness, and community involvement. Headquartered in Philadelphia, Aramark has approximately 255,000 employees serving clients in twenty-two countries. Learn more at the company’s Web site and on its Twitter site.