This Monday I was able to attend an amazing event at the National Restaurant Association in DC where 6 chefs created dishes to compete for the top spot among the tasters and judges. There were also 2 mixologists and a sommelier sampling some of the best Chilean dishes. Most of the Chilean dishes featured some type of seafood such as shrimp and octopus, while many also had a type of berry or olive oil. Everything was delicious and it was definitely tough to vote on what was my favorite!
I decided to go outside of what I typically eat and get a little daring by trying octopus and chicken liver. Chef Victor Albisu Del Campo served their Smoked Chicken Liver Crostini topped with burnt Chilean blackberry. This was fantastic and the blend of the chicken with a rich blackberry topping gave a sweet taste complemented nicely by the crunchy crostini.
Next up was a trip to the wine offerings. My favorite red wine is a Cabernet Sauvignon so I tested the Los Vascos wine. Wow, it was great and had bold flavors. I could taste the cherry as well as the spice which definitely came into effect, making the flavor very strong.
Chef Felipe Milanes from Toro Toro had another great dish to offer, based on one of my favorite recipes, the South American arepa. An arepa is a corn pancake, which served as the base for this tasty dish topped with salmon. This bite-sized taste delivered a large burst of flavor and very satisfying.
Another dish that was also great was the Savory Chicken Tarlets with Chilean Berries by Chef Riyad Bouizar of Magazan restaurant. A light puff pastry was filled with almonds, honey, chicken and topped with raspberries or blackberries. It served as a sweet, almost dessert-like dish and I would love to go try Magazan and see what more they have to offer! Overall, the night was a great success with amazing bites from all 6 restaurants, drinks with house made syrups featuring grapefruit and grape flavors. The night was a hit and served in a fantastic location, I was thoroughly impressed by all of the chefs and even went out of my food comfort zone to taste new items I would never have even thought of trying. Now, I have 6 more restaurants to add to my list: Lupo Verde, Toro Toro, Magazan, Kaz, and Del Campo.