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Bocuse d'Or Update: USA Semi-Finalists Announced!

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This morning Daniel Boulud along with Jerome Bocuse, Dieter Hannig, Gérard Collomb (the mayor of Lyon) and other officials from the Bocuse d'Or competition announced the eight semi-finalist teams from the United States. These teams of two will go on to compete against one another this September in Orlando to determine who will rep America in the Olympics of the food world. Remember, whichever team wins in Orlando will take a three month break to train with Thomas Keller and USA team coach Rolando Henin in the specially designed cooking facility on the grounds of the French Laundry. And the finalists are:

Hung Huynh (!!) - winner of Top Chef season 3
Rogers Powell -French Culinary Institute Instructor
Timothy Hollingsworth - sous chef, French Laundry
Richard Rosendale - Rosendale's, Columbus OH
Michael Rotondo - chef de cuisine, Charlie Trotter's
Kevin Sbraga -culinary director, Garces Restaurant Group, Philadelphia
Percy Whatley - executive chef, North Parks, CA

Damon Wise - corporate chef, Craft restaurants (withdrew application this morning)

Important addendum: After the announcement the wily Flo Fab asked the team why chefs like Charlie Trotter, Daniel Humm, or their ilk can't rep the USA. The answer: it would just be too hard for them to leave their restaurants. The big guys just don't have the time.

All in, it looks like the panel chose a diverse group geographically (California to Chicago to NYC) and in terms of background and experience (Reality TV, FCI, exec and sous chefs). Anyone ready to put money down on who will prevail in Florida in two months?
· Eater PSA: 7 Days Left for Bocuse d'Or Aps [~E~]

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