Tag Archives: Cooking

Competition Dining Series “Final Fire” Battle of the Champions Tickets On Sale Today at 7pm!

Drawing Knives

The regional winners draw knives to determine the bracket for Final Fire 2013
(photo courtesy of Competition Dining)

Final Fire Returns to Raleigh!
The Got To Be NC Competition Dining Series returns to Raleigh in November for the “Final Fire” competition. Final Fire will conclude the statewide chef competition and determine NC’s champion. Reservations open Oct. 30 at 7 pm online here.

Location & Dates
The four competitive dinners will be hosted at Renaissance Raleigh North Hills Hotel at 4100 Main at North Hills St., Raleigh (map)

The series begins on Nov. 20 and concludes on Nov. 23. The Got To Be NC Competition Dining Champions from Asheville, Wilmington, the Triad, the Triangle and Charlotte will compete.

“Final Fire” Chef Brackets

November 20th

  • Noble’s Grille, Winston-Salem (John Bobby) vs. Mimosa Grill, Charlotte (Jon Fortes)

November 21st

  • Flights at Renaissance Raleigh Hotel, Raleigh (Dean Thompson) vs. winner of Nov. 20

November 22nd

  • Persimmons Restaurant, New Bern (Gerry Fong) vs. Red Stag Grill, Asheville (Adam Hayes)

November 23rd

  • Battle between winner of Nov. 21 and Nov. 22

At stake in Final Fire is $4,000, a hand-forged set of knives from Charlotte-based Ironman Forge and a trip to Napa Valley, CA to the pro chef program at the CIA Greystone campus, compliments of Kikkoman. The runner-up receives $1,000.

Now in its second year, The Got To Be NC Competition Dining Series has become a statewide movement. Because all people are chefs, farmers, and diners, the event’s mission is to connect and celebrate this community with a dynamic, entertaining experience.

Sponsors include the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, Pate Dawson-Southern Foods, OUR STATE Magazine, Certified Angus Beef®, Pepsi Bottling Ventures and Swisher Hygiene.

How it Works
Paying guests will savor each course in a blind tasting alongside a panel of culinary and celebrity judges in a series of four dinner competitions. Each evening, two restaurants “battle” it out side-by-side in a single elimination format. Guests savor a six-course menu (three dishes from each chef without knowing whose food they’re tasting) created around a “featured” ingredient. For each dinner, the ingredient will come from a North Carolina farmer or artisan producer. The featured ingredient is revealed to the chefs only an hour before they start cooking, and it must be used in each of the three courses.

Diners, alongside culinary and guest judges, will rate each dish and determine who moves on to the next round and who goes home.

Reservation Information
Event reservations cost $119 each excluding beverage, tax and service charge. Diners can attend as many dinners as they like. Reservations open online here on October 30 at 7 pm . Event organizers expect the finals to sell out in 24 hours so don’t wait!

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Whisk Grand Opening Celebration in Cary ~ Nov. 1st-3rd

independently operated front door

Whisk ~ Cary, NC

Back in September a cool new kitchen & bakeware store opened in Cary’s Waverly Place (map).  I hear from my foodie friends that it is a home cook’s paradise with just about everything you could want for your home kitchen. In addition to all the useful gear, gadgets, and tools for your kitchen they also host a ton of great cooking classes each month.

knife case at whisk

Cooking Knives Dispaly

To help kick off the opening of theis locally owned & operated store and in anticipation of the upcoming holiday baking season the folks at Whisk are holding a Grand Opening Event this weekend (Nov. 1st-3rd) . The event will feature a series of free in-store cooking demonstrations and special discounts all weekend long. I’m a huge local coffee fan (surprise!) so I am hoping to stop by Saturday for the free coffee cupping being hosted by local roaster Muddy Dog Coffee.

bakeware 2


I’m also looking forward to checking out the other demonstrations and browsing all the cooking & bakeware gear to get ideas for holiday gifts. I could use a hand at cooking at home too so I look forward to learning more about future classes being offered at Whisk. For a full list of the Grand Opening Event cooking demonstrations scheduled check out their event page here. For more details about the grand opening event see the official announcement from Whisk below.

dan and diana saklad laughing

Dan and Diana Saklad of Whisk

Whisk Grand Opening Event in Cary – November 1st-3rd
The Triangle’s new store for cooks, “Whisk”, is hosting a three-day Grand Opening Event November 1st, 2nd and 3rd to kick off the holiday baking season. The quality kitchenware store, offering in-store cooking classes, opened this past September in Cary. Whisk has been enthusiastically welcomed by the community and is fast becoming a destination for Triangle cooks.

The Whisk Grand Opening will feature a variety of free, holiday-focused mini-cooking classes. Shoppers can follow their nose to the in-store kitchen classroom and check out what’s cooking. Free giveaways, product demonstrations and sampling will take place all weekend long. A special promotion offering complimentary reusable Whisk shopping bags will allow customers to receive 20% off bakeware items for the 3-day event.

“We have been thrilled with the response since our opening just five weeks ago,” stated owner Dan Saklad. “So many customers have told us that we are the absolute best kitchen store they have ever visited – and that has been our goal from inception. This grand opening celebration is Whisk’s formal debut into the Triangle’s retail scene.”

Open Mondays through Saturdays from 10 am until 6 pm, and on Sundays from Noon until 5 pm, Whisk is located upstairs in the Waverly Place shopping center at 316 Colonades Way in Cary. There are 15 new cooking classes being offered in November, with seven of those focusing on Thanksgiving. The Thanksgiving classes cover everything from the perfect pumpkin pie to healthy holiday eating to the clever use of leftovers.

Whisk is a full service, independently-owned kitchen store featuring a spectacular variety of quality kitchenware, as well as in-store cooking classes for all levels and interests. Specialized services at Whisk include knife sharpening, bridal registry, private parties, and corporate team building events.  For more information, visit www.whiskcarolina.com.


316 Coloades Way
Cary, NC 27518 (map)
Mon-Sat 10AM-6PM
Sunday 12-5PM

Website: http://www.whiskcarolina.com/
Twitter: @WhiskCarolina
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WhiskCarolina

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Filed under Businesses, Food