Culinary Challenge

The Culinary Challenge recognizes outstanding food preparation and presentation skills in collegiate dining services. The winners of each of the association's regional culinary contests square off at the national conference for gold, silver, and bronze medals before a live audience of college and university foodservice managers and industry suppliers.

The 2015 National Culinary Challenge will take place on Thursday, July 23, at the JW Marriott in Indianapolis, Indiana, during the national conference. Competitors will be required to incorporate the featured protein, buffalo flank steak.

The Culinary Challenge is sanctioned by the American Culinary Federation (ACF).


The 2014 Culinary Challenge took place on Thursday, July 10, at the Hilton Baltimore, during the national conference. Competitors were required to incorporate the featured protein, live Maine lobster.

 Congratulations to Matthia Joseph Accurso of the University of Massachusetts—the 2014 winner of the NACUFS Culinary Challenge!

2014 Culinary Challenge Contestants

Scott Turley, Grinnell College, Midwest Region 
Thomas Schraa, University of Maryland, Mid-Atlantic Region 
Martin de Santiago, Jr., Rice University, Southern Region 
Matthia Joseph Accurso, University of Massachusetts, Northeast Region
Edward Stephen Glebus, Jr., San Diego State University, Pacific Region
Eric Diaz, University of Utah, Continental Region 

Culinary Challenge Judges

NACUFS would like to thank the following ACF-sanctioned judges for judging the 2014 Challenge:

William Franklin, CMC, WGMC, AAC (lead judge)
Rene Marquis, CEC, CCE, CCA, AAC
Elena Clement, CEPC

Culinary Challenge MC
Mark Eggerding, US Foods