A “chef wars” competition meant to introduce a new culinary team at Aberdeen Heights, a Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America continuing care retirement community in Kirkwood, MO, turned into an opportunity for one contestant to give a potential job a try before signing on.

Cura Hospitality is the new food service management company for the not-for-profit community. The February chef competition was meant to give residents a taste of the company’s signature fare prepared by newly trained cooks and seasoned culinary experts. Residents sampled the recipes and voted for their favorite dishes, publication Food Service Director reported

Cura Hospitality cook Mitch Williams won the competition with his mother’s recipe for Mexican lasagna. In addition to Williams, participants from Cura included Greg Stelzer, sous chef; Katie Stelzer, baker; and cooks DeAndre Latimore, Patrick Nelson and Tom Poe.

One chef wars competitor wasn’t a Cura team member at the time of the event. Ryan Weber was invited to participate by a friend from Cura Hospitality. After testing the waters at Aberdeen Heights, Weber, a Culinary Institute of America graduate, is now working at Cura Hospitality. 

“Ryan decided that after that experience and what he called a ‘family environment,’ he wanted to work with Cura,” Lindsay Sissom, Cura’s director of dining services at the time of the event, told the media outlet.

Sissom has since been promoted to Cura area manager of the St. Louis/Kansas City region for PMMA.

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