Interestingly, Randy is working his way up in restaurants, rather than going to cooking school and he's very serious about a cooking career. He has a degree in hospitality, so he has the business basics down too. I just love chefs - young AND old.
This Chefs Challenge was beautifully organized too, because the public was able to move around the different cooking stations and talk to the chefs. There was no Iron Chef intensity, since they'd been allowed to come up with their menus and do a lot of prep work in advance. But still, the food had to be cooked in unfamiliar surroundings and perfect plates had to be presented to the judges and, most challenging, the teeming masses had to be fed. It all went off without a hitch.
As we were clamoring for the last course at the last station - an exceptional dessert - a buzz went through the group, just hearing about Michael Jackson. It was surreal. I didn't believe it at first, but enough people had heard it independently that it seemed to be true. I have to say noone skipped the fabulous dessert and ran out of there, but there was a serious hum in the room as people contemplated the end of the king of pop.
Wonderful event, well-run, with a sad twist at the end.