Calling all foodies

Aug 28, 2017

The Batavia Career and Technical Education (CTE) Center is hosting the freshLAB Foodie Challenge competition on Saturday, September 23 beginning at 8:00 a.m. Competitor registration fee of $25 will cover all-day kitchen access and chef mentoring by Chef Tracy Burgio. Chef Burgio is a French Culinary Institute graduate, successful bakery entrepreneur and now the certified Culinary Arts Instructor at the Batavia CTE Center. Proceeds from this challenge will benefit the Batavia CTE Center Culinary Arts Club.

The Batavia CTE Center added Chef Burgio to its teaching staff in 2016. Now, this upcoming community collaboration enables Chef Burgio to share her education, skills and storied travels with freshLAB Foodie Challenge participants. Upon decades of managing some of Rochester’s finest restaurants, Chef Tracy pursued a Pastry Arts degree from New York City’s French Culinary Institute. Upon graduation, Chef Tracy landed in Chicago to work at the famed Bleeding Heart Bakery but soon after followed her heart to Italy. Chef Tracy was selected for an internship to learn from the esteemed Chef Malu Simoes da Cunha.

"My career has taken me all around the world where I have studied with culinary masters. I'm so pleased to be able to share my knowledge with my students at the Batavia Career and Technical Education Center. The freshLAB Foodie Challenge is an excellent opportunity for anyone who is a budding culinary artist who wishes to experience the world of food service,” said Chef Burgio. “I look forward to hosting the challenge and encourage people to enter this contest." 

Leaning on Chef Tracy’s expertise, Batavia is hosting its first creative cook challenge. This one-day contest is open to seasoned cooks to homemakers and is limited to 25 participants. Each contestant will navigate the Batavia CTE Center teaching kitchen with chef leadership and student porter assistance for the Foodie Challenge.

“Tracy is certainly vivacious. We are fortunate to have her leading this challenge,” commented Mary Valle, Batavia Development Corporation Board member and freshLAB volunteer. “It’s worth $25 just to spend a day in the kitchen with her!”

Space is limited. Register online at www.freshLABBatavia.com. The deadline to enter is September 9.

By Lisa Ace, The Batavian