The World Food Championship showed me more than just great food!
Although the World Food Championship is still going on in downtown Celebration, I wanted to share with you everything I learned from my time with the people who run this amazing organization. I spent 3 days learning about the World Food Championship, one on one time with brands who sponsor the event, and even cooking as a competitor! When I got the email that they wanted me to cover the event I had no idea exactly what I was getting myself into except for some amazing food. In the 3 days time, I gained so much knowledge of what the championship is, what it takes to run it, and just how many people benefit! With that being said, here is what I learned:
World Food Championship helps the community:
Yes the point of the championship is to give bragging rights (and a ton of money) to the top chefs from around the world. What many don’t know is that the championship helps benefit the locals here in and around Orlando! First off, the championship brings a ton of revenue in hotel, restaurant and theme park tickets due to the amount of people who travel to compete, judge and watch! More importantly is what happens to the food that is not used at the World Food Championship! All of the food not used during the week is donated to Second Harvest Food Bank here in Central Florida! This helps feed those in need here in the greater Orlando area!
World Food Championship changes lives:
Through my 3 days at the championship I spent time talking to past winners as well as people who are competing for the title of best in the world. The common thing I learned was that the WFC changes people’s lives! Of course the money that comes with the titles help to change lives, but what many do not know is what happens after the WFC is done. Many chefs go on to do TV spots on Food Network in such shows such as Cupcake Wars, Cutthroat Kitchen and more. These TV spots help secure a better life for the cooks and aspiring talents. Many say that the next Rachel Ray and Emeril will more than likely come from the World Food Championship!
World Food Championship is a way of life:
What does it take to be the best of the best? Practice, practice and more practice!!! Just like professional athletes, the cooks that are competing at WFC spend upwards of 40 plus hours tweaking and perfecting their recipes for the judges. These highly trained professionals are more than just cooks, they are a well oiled machine that knows their objectives and executes them perfectly! I learned about that when I stepped away from my camera and keyboard for 2 hours to compete!
I will be the first to tell you that I came into this competition not knowing exactly what to expect but at the end I had no clue what really goes into this competition! I spent 1.5 hours cooking, putting together a recipe, talking to the media, and making sure the dish not only tasted amazing but looked as appealing! I have such a higher respect for these competitors now that I have seen a small taste of what really happens in a competition and the sigh of relief yet the nervousness that comes when you turn your dish in that 10 minute window!
At the end of the day, I came in 11th place, which is nothing to feel bad about! I went head to head against 49 other cooks, bloggers, and even past WFC champs during this blogger cook off! I loved my time at the World Food Championship and cannot wait to do it all again next year! As for this year, I am attending a class to be a judge at the WFC as well as sampling some of the amazing sights and sounds at Celebration this weekend!
For more information about the WFC and to see the official scores of my championship, go to www.WorldFoodChampionships.com. Make sure you check back soon to see some of my experiences with the companies that helped to sponsor the WFC!