Chef R.C. Schroeder, who owns Big Tomatoes in Neenah, captured the Chef Par Excellence award at the 2007 Taste of Elegance competition. Schroeder's winning entree, Proscuitto Wrapped Roulade of Pork Belly with Raspberry Glaze and Pork Shoulder Ragout, helped him capture $750 in cash. He also qualifies for the national competition in California later this spring.
Schroeder competed against nine other finalists. Chef James Deptula, Marriot Madison West-Tiffany Grill in Madison, received the $500 Superior Chef recognition for his preparation of Spicy Pork Cappuccino. Chef Clark Overby, also of Tiffany Grill, received the $250 Premium Chef award. Chef Schroeder also received the People's Choice Award of $250.
Other finalists in the 2007 contest were: Chef Andrew Tenaglia, Lagniappe Brasserie, New Berlin, Cassoulet of Wisconsin Pork; Chef Fred Griesbach, C.E.C, The Sky Club, Wausau, Tiffanies of Asian Essence; Chef Heather Brinker, Kaminski Brothers Chop House, Wisconsin Dells, Pork Fricasse with a Pear and Leek Sauce; Chef James Hummer, Hoffman House, Wausau, Mediterranean Pork Roulade; Chef Justin Draper, High Rock Café, Wisconsin Dells, Barbeque Spice Rubbed Eye of the Ham Roulade with Spinach and Goat Cheese; Chef Jovan Djokovic, Twisted Fork, Milwaukee, Slow Braised Pork Shoulder with Pomegranate Pickled Fennel and Bourbon Sweet Potatoes; and Chef Michael White, Fresco, Madison, Ham and Eggs Ravioli.
The event was sponsored by the Wisconsin Pork Association.