My First Cooking Competition: Raglan Road Master Chef 2015

In May 2015, I stumbled upon a cooking competition being hosted by my favorite restaurant in Orlando, Raglan Road. The competition was being held in celebration of their 10 year anniversary and they wanted to fly 5 lucky winners to Ireland for a 5 day excursion to experience and learn the roots of Raglan Road and it’s owners. Competitors had to enter a 3 course menu fit for the 10 year anniversary of the restaurant and the owners of the restaurant would be the panel of judges selecting their favorites.

I have always been fascinated with the Irish, I love the music, I love the culture and I absolutely love the BEER! When I first visited Raglan Road at what is now known as Disney Springs not long after they opened in 2005 I knew immediately that I was going to be back as often as I could. They have authentic Irish bands and professional Irish dancers that they fly in direct from Ireland, both of which perform every night at the pub. If you visit the restaurant, ask for a seat near the stage, it’s worth the wait. The food is very authentic having been crafted by one of Irelands top chefs, Kevin Dundon. The entire restaurant was built in Ireland and transported here piece by piece, you don’t get much more authentic than that! I have always known that I liked Raglan Road but now I consider it a very special place and I have so much respect for the food, entertainment and the management company.

For my entry I made a Deviled Scotch Egg appetizer served on brown irish soda bread, a Bangers and Smash stew for the entree and for dessert a Caramelized Pear Tart with a Whiskey Creme Sauce.

Only a few days after the competition closed did I receive the phone call with the amazing news that I had been choses as one of the 5 winners of the contest and would be flown to Ireland just a few short months later. As the weeks passed I learned more about the other winners and some tidbits about the trip. I also learned that we would be joined by 5 local food writers and bloggers who would be documenting the experience.

This was the itinerary they set for the trip.

Amazing right! It was amazing! One of those defining moments in your life that you’ll remember and cherish forever. There is way too much to write and read in a single post so on the blog you will find a day by day account of the trip and the final dinner at Raglan Road.

Needless to say it was this first big affirmation of my ability to create a recipe and prepare a meal that others would enjoy that finally pushed me to create this blog. A place where I can share my culinary adventures and experiences and bring all of you to my table each day. I look forward to continuing the journey with you.



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