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Fort Worth's Tokyo Cafe Chef To Compete Against Top Austin, Houston Chefs In The ATX

Back in August, Tokyo Cafe's Chef Kevin Martinez won the Dallas semi-finals of the Chefs Under Fire competition, beating out Thuy Nguyen, a TCC culinary student, Reata executive chef Juan Rodriguez and Scot Loranc of Central Market in the Iron Chef-style cook-off at the Milestone Culinary Arts Center in Dallas.

Now, the finals are upon us: Martinez will be judged by three of Texas' best-known chefs when he goes up against Austin/San Antonio winner Daniel Valenzuela of the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts and Houston's Harold Wong of Azuma Sushi & Robata Bar at the AT&T Executive Education & Conference Center in Austin on October 16. The judges are David Bull of Congress in Austin, Tyson Cole of Uchi + Uchiko in Austin, and Dallas' own Kent Rathbun of all those restaurants Kent Rathbun runs.

Chefs Under Fire™ 2011 Final Competition

Chefs Kevin Martinez, Daniel Valenzuela and Harold Wong go head-to-head in a battle for the winning title and Grand Prize

After much anticipation, three Texas chefs will compete in the Chefs Under Fire Final Competition. Chefs Kevin Martinez of Tokyo Café (representing Dallas/Fort Worth), Daniel Valenzuela of Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts (representing Austin/San Antonio), and Harold Wong of Azuma Sushi & Robata Bar (representing Houston) will face off in Austin, TX on October 16 at AT&T Executive Education & Conference Center.

Celebrity Chefs David Bull of Congress Austin, Tyson Cole of Uchi + Uchiko and Kent Rathbun of Kent Rathbun Concepts will taste and critique the Chef Contestants’ dishes and determine which chef will prevail as the champion of Chefs Under Fire 2011. Garrett Weber-Gale, Olympic Swimmer and co-founder of Athletic Foodie™, will preside over the event as Emcee.

The Welcome Reception to kick off the evening will allow guests to mingle with the Celebrity Chef Judges and get an up close and personal look as the Chef Contestants begin to prepare their competition dish. Small bites from Chef Josh Watkins of The Carillon Restaurant and beverage from Saint Arnold Brewery, Smart Water, and various wines will be available for guests to enjoy.

Unlike the Regional Competitions, during the main event, guests will enjoy a sample of each Contestant’s competition dish, which will be prepared by students of Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts. Door prizes from Mission Restaurant Supply, Gel Pro and Bon Home will be awarded to lucky attendees.

In a consistent effort to bring education into each event, Keeper Collection is excited to announce that Master Sommelier Devon Broglie of Whole Foods Market will be the guest Sommelier for the evening, offering wine tasting and food pairing ideas throughout the evening.

Event Sponsors include Capital One Bank, Mission Restaurant Supply, and media sponsor, Texas Monthly.

Fifty percent of ticket proceeds will be donated to Austin Bakes for Bastrop, a group of bloggers, foodies, and local Austin businesses raising money for wildlife relief efforts in Central Texas. Tickets can be purchased on the Chefs Under Fire website at

· Chefs Under Fire [Official]
· All Competitions Coverage on Eater Dallas [-EDFW-]

The Tokyo Cafe's garden. [Photo: Tokyo Cafe/Facebook]