Chef Breaux Crowned 2017 Queen Of Louisiana Seafood
NEW ORLEANS – Louisiana Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser and the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board (LSPMB) crowned Chef Bonnie Breaux of The St. John Restaurant in St. Martinville as the Queen of Louisiana Seafood at the 10th annual Louisiana Seafood Cook-Off, held Tuesday, June 20, at the Cajundome Convention Center in conjunction with A Taste of Eat Lafayette.
To earn the crown, Chef Breaux prepared crackling-crusted black drum graced with a fennel marmalade, nestled on Abita Amber-infused brabant potatoes and sautéed haricot vert, topped with butter-poached, jumbo-lump, Blue-Point crabmeat. Chef Breaux beat 11 of the state’s best chefs by showing her creativity and highlighting the superior quality of the seafood that comes from Louisiana’s nutrient rich shorelines, event reps said.
“It is an honor to crown the new Queen of Louisiana Seafood, Chef Bonnie Breaux of St. Martinville,” said Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser. “This year’s competition was the toughest yet, as each competitor truly showcased why Louisiana has the most exceptional, healthy and delicious seafood in the world. Together, we will promote Louisiana’s thriving seafood industry and the impact it has on the state’s tourism, economy and culture.”
Chef Breaux’s first duty as Queen of Louisiana Seafood will be to represent the state at the Great American Seafood Cook-Off held on Aug. 5 in New Orleans, where she will compete against the nation’s top seafood chefs.
Chef Anthony Felan of Wine Country Bistro in Shreveport was named runner up of Tuesday’s culinary competition with his Bistro blackened catfish with crawfish bisque and hoe cakes. Closely behind was Nathan Richard of Cavan in New Orleans who prepared tuna piccata with crab roe and caper butter.
Chef Cory Bahr, 2011 King of Louisiana Seafood who is currently vying to be named Food Network’s “Next Food Network Star,” and local radio celebrity Bernie Lee hosted this year’s competition.
Each dish was scrutinized by some of Louisiana's most seasoned chefs and food lovers, including Cajun Country caterer and U.S. Embassy representative Carroll Angelle, Louisiana Kitchen & Culture editor Susan Ford, local media influencer Chris Jay, and Our House Hospitality CEO Emery Whalen. The 2015 King of Louisiana Seafood, Mike Brewer, served as “Chef Ref,” ensuring each of the competing chefs followed all cook-off rules and the dishes fulfilled all requirements.
This year’s competitors were:
• Chef Ryan Andre', City Pork Brasserie and Bar (Baton Rouge)
• Chef Bonnie Breaux, The St. John Restaurant (St. Martinville)
• Chef Lyle Broussard, Jack Daniel’s Bar & Grill (Lake Charles)
• Chef Eric Cook, Bourbon House (New Orleans)
• Chef Anthony Felan, Wine Country Bistro (Shreveport)
• Chef Ben Fidelak, The Levee (Alexandria)
• Chef Austin Kirzner, Red Fish Grill (New Orleans)
• Chef Dustie Latiolais, Crawfish Town USA (Henderson)
• Chef Chris McKnight, The Fat Pelican (Monroe)
• Chef Ernest Prejean, Prejean’s Restaurant (Lafayette)
• Chef Nathan Richard, Cavan (New Orleans)
• Chef Brad Tanner, Café Vermilionville (Lafayette)
For recipes of each competing dish
Chef Bonnie Breaux of The St. John Restaurant in St. Martinville’s winning dish of crackling-crusted black drum with fennel marmalade, Abita Amber brabant potatoes, haricot vert and jumbo-lump crabmeat.