Thursday, November 5, 2015

Ric Orlando vs. Bobby Flay: The winner is ...

Ric Orlando
A few months ago, local chef/entrepreneur Ric Orlando (New World Bistro in Albany, New World Home Cooking in Saugerties, etc.) taped an episode of Food Network's "Beat Bobby Flay" competition. By contract, contestants seeking to top the celebrity chef are not allowed to let outsiders know before the show airs how they fared.

Tonight, we found out.

Orlando was pitted against Indian chef Kiran Virma of Houston. Whoever won moved on to the final round against Flay. Their main assigned ingredient was flatiron steak. Judges Anne Burrell and Spike Medelsohn liked  Orlando's Korean-style steak lettuce wraps better than Virma's curry-infused steak fajitas, particularly when none of the fajita meat showed up on Burrell's plate.

The show format calls for the challenger to pick the dish to be contested in the final round. Orlando picked potato latkes.

Orlando, who won several times on the Food Network's "Chopped" show several years ago, made two dishes: latkes with smoked salmon, salmon roe, and sour cream, and latkes with apple and chipoltle peppers. Flay made a version with smoked trout, tarragon dressing, and pickled apricot.

The result, as decided in a blind tasting by judges Jason Burchard, first-ever "Chopped" grand champion Madison Cowan, and FN regular Maneet Chauhan: Ric Orlando!

Chalk up yet another Food Network win for a Hudson Valley chef.


  1. No Surprise here - Ric you are awesome and love your passion and creativity on the plate - we are lucky to have you here