Boca Burger Battle 2014

MEET OUR "2014 GRILL MASTER JUDGES"

Chef Ron Duprat Ron Duprat

Internationally acclaimed Chef Ron Duprat is best known as one of the top competitors on Bravo TV’s “Top Chef”. During that season’s competition in Las Vegas, Duprat, who grew up in Mare Rouge, Haiti, amazed judges with is exotic flavors, combining his rich Haitian heritage with French Asian influences. Since his days on Top Chef, Chef Ron has been traveling the world sharing his culinary prowess in cooking demonstrations, working as a celebrity chef at numerous restaurants, resorts and companies. He’s currently a consultant for the international food company Rastelli Direct and working as a consulting executive chef at the Sugar Bay Resort and Spa in St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Educated at the College Aime Cesaire, La Varenne Ecole de Cuisine and the Culinary Institute of America, Chef Ron has used his cooking skills to also become actively involved in fighting child obesity and healthy kids eating. He’s affiliated with several major causes, including the First Lady Michelle Obama’s ‘Let’s Move’ campaign, No Hungry Kids, the Black Culinarian Alliance, the College of Culinary Arts in Miami, Chef’s Table and Basil Magazine’s Chef Council. Chef Ron is a Caribbean Black Elk Ambassador at Black Elk Wine and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton named him a “Culinary Ambassador”. Recently, the Huffington Post named him as one of the “10 Black Chefs That Are Changing the Food World as We Know It” and the Washington Post company’s TheRoot.com included him in a list of the “How 12 Black Chefs Cooked Their Way to the Top of the World” along with Marcus Samuelsson, G. Garvin, B. Smith and Tre Wilcox.

Chef Ron Duprat | Web

Publix Aprons Cooking School Aprons Cooking School Chef Rey

Rey began his Publix career in 1999 in Customer Service. While attending Johnson & Wales University, Rey worked at The Four Seasons Hotel in Miami. In 2008, Rey transferred to the Prepared Foods Department at Publix Greenwise Market in Boca Raton to pursue his culinary career. Rey began working at the Plantation Publix Aprons Cooking School in 2010 to share his culinary passion with others. Rey has now been promoted to Resident Chef at the Boca Raton Publix Aprons Cooking School.

When asked “what is your favorite cuisine to make?”, he answers “all of them!”. He enjoys cooking traditional recipes, but Rey’s Latin heritage has a lot of influence on the recipes he creates.

Together with the Aprons staff, Rey wants students to “learn to have fun in the kitchen!”

Rey De La Osa Resident Chef at Aprons Cooking School | Publix at Polo Club Shops
5050 Champion Blvd., Boca Raton, FL 33496 | 561.994.4461 | Web

Burgers On The Beach Jamie Frankel

Meet Jamie Frankel. As the dedicated grill-man of all the family BBQ's, my love for burgers began when I was tailgating at a football game. The smell, the fire, the taste, it all blended perfectly and has now grown into an obsession that has taken on new meaning. Creating a burger social club gave me a way to get my friends together. Also, it allowed me to explore the various menus that populated throughout the surrounding cities. Chicago is where it all started, a couple of friends meeting for burgers. "We should do this monthly,” we all said. And so it began... The Windy City Burger Club was formed back on October 1st, 2008. After a solid year in Chicago, my wife and I relocated back down to South Florida and so did my love for burgers. We expanded the club to now become Burgers by the Beach covering as much of the 561 & 954 area codes as we can... with its members: Lunchbox, Sgt. Sauce, Double Stack, Lil Dipper, Meat Sweats, Poppa Bypass & Vegmaster.

Burgers By The Beach, "Don't forget to share your leftovers." | Web

Yelp Yelp Judge

Born and raised in Miami, Blue Arauz lived all over Miami-Dade County growing up. After graduating from Florida International University he began his career in marketing running various promotions for local nightlife venues. A chance internship with Yelp would lead him on a new career path - exploring all things local.

Crossing over the county line he is now entrenched in a new community. With the launch of Yelp Broward-Palm Beach earlier this year this Miami native is reveling in all the BPB has to offer. A true meat eater with a mean sweet tooth he has been spoiled by the rich culinary experience that the SoFla melting pot has to offer. 

With a deep love for food, social media and community he lives and breaths what it means to be a Community Manager for Yelp. Ever on the hunt for a hidden gem he is always looking forward to finding his new favorite business!

Blue Arauz | Yelp Broward-Palm Beach Community Manager | Web

93.9 MIA Chanel

Born in New York City, and raised on the border in Laredo Texas, this Dominican Tejana caught the radio bug when she was just a child. Her mother worked for two local radio stations on either side of the border, where she recorded spots in both English and Spanish. She used to get so excited when her mother would take her to work and let her record something with her.ť Moving back to New York in 1990 gave Chanel the perfect opportunity to do voice-over work. Through her Uncle, a radio Veteran, she was able to meet influential people in the business. In 2000, a friend gave Chanel her first radio job at Rumba 107.1 where she spent two years as the midday personality. She is forever grateful to this person for believing in her and helping her to get to where she is today.ť With the Latino format exploding across the country, Chanel began to receive offers from other stations. One offer she could not refuse came in 2005 when she was given the opportunity to work at Mega 94.9. She loves living in South Florida. Everyone was so welcoming when we first moved here, she met some amazing people.ť She is now both excited and grateful to be a part of the 93.9 Mia family.

93.9 MIA | 561.616.6646 | Web

Gater 98.7 FM Chad Tyson

Originally from West “By God” Virginia, Tyson has lived in Hawaii, D.C., and now calls South Florida home! He is a US Army Veteran and has been doing radio for over 15 years. His show can be heard weekends on 98.7 The Gater and at gaterrocks.com on iHeartRadio. Tyson is also the host of the Next Topic Podcast, and the Digital Program Director for Clear Channel Media + Entertainment West Palm Beach. When he’s not on the air or “on the line,” he’s either surfing, relaxing on the beach, spending time with his family, or picking out a new restaurant to try! He also likes to cook, especially on the grill!

GATER 98.7 FM | 561.616.6646 | Web

The Food For Thought Show Peter Leonard

Peter Leonard is a Boca Raton resident, transplanted from NYC 27 years ago...and is a professional musician, semi-professional comedian, and a radio veteran from WSHE, Y-100, WQAM, WHTQ, and POWER 96. Peter's "The Food For Thought Radio Show" has been broadcasting from area restaurants for 4 years, and can be heard on 1470 a.m. and wwnnradio.com Thursday nights at 6pm from MEATBALL ROOM in Boca Raton.

The Food For Thought Radio Show | Web

Fox 29 WFLX Rachel Leigh

Rachel Leigh joined the Fox 29 News team as the Internet content director and entertainment reporter in June 2007. She made the big move to West Palm Beach only two weeks after graduating from the University of Evansville which is located in her hometown, Evansville, Indiana. While in college, Rachel worked for our sister station, WFIE, as an Internet producer. In January 2009, Rachel traveled to Washington D.C. to cover the inauguration of Barack Obama for all of our sister stations nationwide. She quickly learned how to carry her laptop, camera and tripod across town, and found work spaces in unique places. Her favorite makeshift 'office' was in between the bookshelves of a Barnes and Nobles. Rachel is the host of several segments on Fox 29 including Peggy's Picks and Tunie's Tips, and is our area's only evening news traffic reporter. Throughout the years, Rachel has interviewed several celebrities including Burt Reynolds, Regis Philbin, Bill Cosby, Flo-Rida, David Cassidy, Clay Walker, Jane Seymour, Ty Pennington, Michelle Branch and Rodney Atkins. Rachel is also a cycle, barre and P90X instructor at several fitness centers. In her free time, Rachel loves riding her bike, running and taking her dogs, Toby, Willie and Dierks, to the beach.

FOX 29 - WFLX | Web

Chef Tommy Valdes

As far back as I can remember, it all started when I was a little boy.

I now enjoy whey my family tells stories about the days of all my cooking ventures. My aunt tells the story about the day that she walked into the kitchen and she saw me trying to reach the top of the stove and cook some scrambled eggs.

She was the one that always said "He is going to be a chef one day"

I worked in small restaurants all over Long Island, until one day one of my friends noticed how good I was at cooking. He had mentioned a school located up state N.Y. And he suggested that I check it out. Not to mention that I fell in love with the school I also graduated from it. The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park.

About 32 years have gone by and I am still cooking better than ever. I worked as the Executive chef for many hotels including the Marriott Hotels, Sheraton Corporation , Helmsley Palace, N.Y. Hilton and many more to mention. I am also the Author of two cookbooks . Secrets of a chef and Never Trust a Skinny Chef.

I am now involved in a private Restaurant consulting and investment firm “MSIG” Marginal Street Investment Group. I work with other restaurant and night club owners helping them enhance and create a more stream line operation and keep them safe and out of the Red.

Chef Tommy Valdes | Boca Raton | tommyvaldes@comcast.net


MEET OUR "CHIEF HOST FOR THE BOCA BURGER BATTLE"

Neil Saffer

Since attending his first auction at 8 years old Neil Saffer knew what he wanted to be.

Neil Saffer CAI, AARE, BAS, has been a Licensed Florida Auctioneer since 1990. Neil has conducted over 1,600 Benefit, Charity, Fundraising and Real Estate auctions during his 20 plus year career. Neil is a graduate of the State University of NY at Albany, a graduate of National Auction Training Center class of ’89, earned the Benefit Auctioneer Specialist designation in 2009 and became a member The Certified Auctioneers Institute in 2010. Neil has been a speaker and panel member on the topic of benefit auctions at the last 2 National Auctioneers Association annual conferences, and is currently served on the committee to rewrite the Benefit Auctioneer Specialist curriculum for The National Auctioneers Association.

Mr. Saffer strongly believes in giving back to the community. He has coached youth sports for over two decades and is the past President of both The Boca Raton Rotary Fund and the Rotary Club of Boca Raton. Neil received the Rotarian of the year award in 2004, the special service award in 2008, and the service above self award in 2009. He has served on the board of directors of the American Cancer Society, the Nicholas R. Chiera Foundation, the Spanish River High School PTSA, The Tomorrows Promise Community School and the Gold Coast British Sports Car Club. For More Infomation on Neil Saffer visit SafferAndCompany.com.