S&D Coffee & Tea (S&D), the largest coffee and tea manufacturer and supplier to restaurants and convenience stores in America, is proud to announce that Johnson & Wales University (JWU) Charlotte student Chainey Kuykendall took top honors in its 7th annual Culinary Challenge, held Feb. 14.
The student chef from Mount Airy, North Carolina, impressed the judges and earned $5,000 with her recipe for “Coffee ScenTEAd Abura Soba,” a Japanese dish that features soba noodles, chicken and a tea-soaked egg. Kuykendall was also the winner of the 2016 S&D Culinary Challenge.
Additionally, Kuykendall’s chef mentor Aaron Rivera, owner of The Chrome Toaster food truck, earned $5,000 for his chosen charity — the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
“With Chainey’s victories in the past two culinary competitions, she has proven to have a talent for creating exceptional recipes that incorporate our coffee and tea ingredients,” said John Buckner, vice president of marketing at S&D. “This year’s group of students truly exceeded our expectations, and it is our honor to present this competition as a ‘learning lab’ to help JWU students grow as chefs and prepare for their futures in the foodservice industry.”
In addition to the grand prize, the following recognitions were awarded:
2nd Place ($2,500)
Garret Lochner, Florence, SC, & Megan Hoag, Raleigh, NC, “Gulab Jamuns in Cinnamon Coffee Syrup”
3rd Place ($1,250) and Best Demo Presentation ($250)
Lorenzo Delgado, Kannapolis, NC, “Not Your Average Cup of Joe”
Best Beverage Pairing ($250)
Gillian Howard, Memphis, TN, “Coffee Shwarmas & Ginger Mint Tea”
Facebook Fan Favorite ($250)
Nicholas Wishart, Hillsboro, OH, “Over the Rhine”
The students’ dishes and presentations were judged by an expert culinary panel — Will Eudy, corporate executive chef, McAlister’s Deli; Brittany Dubin, culinary manager, Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corporation; Bret Thorn, senior food & beverage editor, Nation’s Restaurant News; Grant Springer, senior director of R&D, Bojangles’ Restaurants, Inc.; and Eric Nakata, VP of culinary & innovation, S&D.